Wotje Atoll

Wotje Atoll
Taking off from Wotje Atoll

Friday, March 14, 2014

The King Tide!

Over a week ago as we started our day here in the islands little did we realize destruction was happening.  I went on my morning walk as usual but as I returned my phone was ringing.  On it was one of our parents telling me that his son would not be in school.  I asked why and he proceeded to let me know that his house was being destroyed by the tide.  Needless say our day started off on the go!  I then went out side and realized that the tide was up to our sea wall and coming over the top.  Within the next few minutes we were getting reports of flooding and massive damage.  The national police were evacuating people and getting them to safety.  Roads were closed and we were blocked in at the compound.  We still had an internet connection and immediately sent out the word for people to begin to pray.  Shawn and I began to pray as well.  We had heard reports that people were missing in town and we were concerned for those bearing the strongest part of the king tide.

This is one that we literally had no warning on.  Some have asked what is a king tide.  A king time is one that basically much higher than normal.  In Majuro that high tide most of the time is about 1.6 feet!  That day it was 5.2 feet.  You might say that does not sound like to much.  Probably in most continents and islands with high ground it is not a problem.  There are places for people to go.  Here on Majuro we are about 6 inches above sea level!  There are very few buildings that are built more than one story!  So when one of these king tides come, it can be devastating.  To go along with this one there was a mighty storm surge that pushed the tide in hard and fast!  This king tide destroyed 69 homes and displaced 940 people!  Might not sound a lot to you, but on an atoll our size this is a lot of people.  The government has declared a state of emergency and is gathering supplies to take care of those affected.

Now for the praise report.  That morning was the worst of the tides expected to come.  We were supposed to have another major one that night at 5 pm.  However, due to the prayers of the people of God it was not bad at all.  No major flooding and no more damage.  Praise the Lord!  On top of that no lives were lost, and anyone that was missing was found.  No major injuries at all.  Glory to God!  We give Him all of the glory and honor for His protection.  Personal stuff can be replaced but lives can not.  Churches, schools and government buildings are being used to house those who lost their homes.  Local government and public works did a great job of clearing the roads/cleaning up debris.  We just wanted to take a moment today, to thank all of you for praying and standing with the Marshallese and us!  Your prayers are vital to what we are doing here in the Marshall Islands and the Pacific!  Thank you all, for your faithful prayers and support.  God is faithful and always in control.

Running with the Vision,
Steve, Shawn, Richard, Stephen, Terina and Kanani

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