Well, Tim is back from India and will soon be sending a bit of an update of his own BUT this has been quite a week for us and I really want to share it with you... and ask for your prayers
Last monday night, around 7:45pm, I was talking with Tim on the phone and noticed a funny smell. For about 5 minutes, while I was talking with him, I hunted for the source of the smell. After a couple minutes Tim said "Britany, you need to hang up and call Jeff Borher (a friend and neighbor)". By the time Jeff made it over (3 minutes later) there was a light haze in the air and getting worse by the minute. We both looked for a minute for the source and could not find it. We went to the crawl and as soon as Jeff opened it black smoke came out and he heard crackling. I ran upstairs and got the kids while Jeff called 911. Within 1-2 minutes 8 fire trucks had responded with about 20 - 30 firemen. As soon as the fireman came the air made it into the crawl space and flames came shooting out the front of the house. From the first time I smelled the smoke to the fire department coming was about 10 -12 minutes.
I'm writing this email because I truly want to give you all a glimpse of how the Lords finger prints have been all over this last week!!!
First and most amazing miracle was that I truly watched while the whole thing happen. I was going to be upstairs watching a movie with the kids but Tim called (we had not talked in about 3 days) so I came downstairs. Secondly, it was my hubby on the phone and he could really walk me through what I should look for. Another amazing miracle was how quickly our friend Jeff felt he should go and how he stepped into help where Tim was absent. Fourth the kids had a fire drill at school that day so we had talked about what the safe thing was to do in a fire. Fifth, about 5 mins after the fire department arrived Kelly (Jeff's wife) saw the trucks pass her house and knew they were for us so she came and helped me try to calm the kids and then a few minutes later took them away to their house.
What happened? Apparently there was a open wire under the living room floor that was supposed to be a dead wire caught on fire. Because the underpart of the house was so sealed no air had been allowed to get in which is why there is less damage than it should have been. The firemen told me that if Jeff had not put the hatch lid down again it would have been much worse. As soon as the firetrucks made it to the scene that is when air had been released into the house. The positive about the way it happened was that because it was so contained not as much was damaged, the scary part was because it had some time to stew once it took off the fire cheif said it would have taken off fast. So the fact it took off right as the fire trucks arrived was a true miracle. Had I not been home or a few hours later when all 5 of us were a sleep life could have changed dramatically.
Another miracle about me being downstairs was because the fire alarm never went off till the fire department arrived. I had to ask the firecheif why that happened and he told me that it was the type of smoke. It was white-clear and very hard to detect, it was not coming of any source but it seemed like the walls were smoking. The cheif fireman told me that once the fire alarm goes off you have about 3 minutes to get out of your house!!! WOW that surprized me! Erin and I were telling each other yesterday how much we have learned this week. These are only a few of the finger prints of the Lord, I'm sure I could write a small book about this week.
I can't tell you how much care we have recieved from people watching the kids to meals brought to us. Thanks you to all of you who have come around us so fast and with such love. I have to mention 2 people that with out them I would not have made it this week. My sister Erin took us all into her home and truly stopped her life this week to help me handle all the phone calls, meetings and decisions that needed to be made. Erin you truly were and are amazing, Thank you! Secondly Jeff Borher for stepping in and filling in for Tim. He was the one who called 911, helped me during the whole fire and then spent the next day helping me with the Investigators, fire shiefs, insurance guys and the many cleaning services that came alongside a fire. Jeff I could not have done it without you there, many thanks! And Kelly thank you for letting us have him so much this week and for loving on my kids during a tough time! I also wanted to thanks Brian Borher, Dave Hopkins, Troy Noland, Rita Valdes, Teresa Rickard, Kendra Kazabee, Mark and Rhonda Began, Nancy Melrose, Wendy Luikart and RHCC for the many things they have done to make the week go smoother! What a amazing community around me and my family!
Again thank you for all the prayers that were sent out for Tim's trip and for us here at home. We truly could not live without them! I told someone the other day that when our men are away we are under a greater attack from the enemy but at the same time we experience a mightier heavenly presence surrounding us!!! Our God is so much greater than we can understand but I sure can say that my mind and heart have been open to a greater understanding of this mightiness this last week!!!
Just to let you know that my computer has been taken away for repairs (smoke damage) so emails will be slow in coming. Also, we are in a hotel right now but will be moving to our short-term housing tomorrow for a couple of months as the rebuilding and smoke damage is repaired.
With love to you all,
Tim, Britany and Clan