Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Greensburg, Kansas

Dreams from the LORD 2007-2010
29 April 2008

I am standing on the steps of the courthouse in Greensburg, Kansas. I just hitchhiked from Pratt to Greensburg this afternoon on U.S. 54. A year ago (4 May 2007) a tornado hit Greensburg; it looks like it totally destroyed eighty per cent of the town. Houses were taken off of their foundations, lots of trees were uprooted and there are still pieces of metal embedded in many of the trees that are left standing. Locals told me that the tornado was two miles wide. I have never seen devastation like I have seen here in Greensburg. The people of Greensburg have done an excellent job in cleaning up their town; you see brand new homes going up everywhere.

I walked past a CBS News trailer. President Bush is going to be in town this weekend to speak at the Greensburg High School Graduation Commencement. I am sure there will be a lot of media in town for the President’s visit.

This past week I stayed at Lawrence and Cheryl’s place in rural Stafford, Kansas. I met Cheryl and her daughter, Jessica, and Jessica’s husband, Grisha, six years ago when I was hitchhiking through St. John. My home base from November 2001 to August 2002 was St. John. I knew several people in St. John and would stay at their homes whenever I was passing through. Those people no longer live in St. John. So it definitely was the Lord’s will to go to Stafford.

While I was staying at Lawrence and Cheryl’s place, a lady named Connie phoned me and asked me to speak at the First Baptist Church in Stafford on Sunday. So I preached on Acts Chapter 10 and on obedience to the Lord. The Lord really blessed me for preaching at First Baptist. The congregation also gave me a generous offering, so I was able to get a motel in Pratt last night, I got a haircut this morning and I made photocopies of High Plains Drifter and Dreams from the Lord and mailed them to Lawrence and Cheryl. Cheryl is not into computers and the Internet, so now she can read the photocopies instead of using the Internet.

Since I saw Jessica and Grisha last (2002), they have had four kids. The oldest is Jesse (5 years) and the second oldest is David (3 years); they also have baby twins—a boy and a girl. Jessica later told me that when she was praying with the kids before bedtime, David said this: “Dear God, thank you that Mr. Tim is not dead. If Mr. Tim wants a toy, please give him a toy. If Mr. Tim needs a car, please give him a car.” I thought it was so funny.

It was a very blessed week for me. I spent part of three days pruning the trees and cleaning up broken limbs around Lawrence and Cheryl’s place—there was an ice storm in January. They let me use the car, so I was able to go to the library in Stafford and in St. John to get some work done on my website. Lawrence and Cheryl have a beautiful, peaceful place out in the country; I enjoyed taking walks down the gravel road and in the fields with their four pet dogs. It looks like the winter wheat is doing very well—they must’ve had plenty of snow this winter.

The courthouse here in Greensburg is still standing, but it doesn’t look like it is being used at this time. To the west and south of here (the corner of Florida and Oak Street) is where most of the devastation happened. Someone told me that eleven people died because of the tornado. On the corner of Florida and Main Street, there is a lone, brick building standing. All around this building nothing was left, just rubble. It looks like this building was at “ground zero.”

Looks like I will head west to Garden City. From Garden I will then mosey on up north into Nebraska on U.S. 83. It has been a beautiful, breezy day. It is nice to be in this part of Kansas again. When I hitchhiked back to St. John and Stafford, it felt like I was coming home.

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