Fear and Faith

During the past nine days, a situation I felt I would be prepared to face threatened close to our doorstep. We have always carried insurance on our property, but we have never before come face-to-face with the threat of catastrophic loss.

When the wind began to increase in intensity at our condo complex last Tuesday, I went to our front deck with my camera to take more pictures of the Waldo Canyon fire. Immediately, I knew the fire was out of control. With ash swirling around my face like snowflakes, I took pictures only a short time before the fire raged over the mountain ridge and entered the Mountain Shadows subdivision to the north of us.

Picture taken from front deck at 2:54 p.m. on June 26, 2012.

Picture taken from front deck at 6:45 p.m. on June 26, 2012, shortly before our evacuation.

  • Yes, I felt fear. Fear is a natural response, but not an indication that I do not trust and rely on God’s love and goodness.
  • Yes, I prayed. I prayed for the safety of the firefighters; for our police force; for our Emergency Management Team; for our city and county officers; for the successful evacuation of residents.
  • No, I do not understand the forces of nature. I just respect them.
  • No, I do not understand the columnist for our local newspaper, The Gazette, who, in the midst of hurt and loss, mocked and belittled those of us who were praying and trusting God during this time of tragedy.

We returned to our home on Friday and remain on pre-evacuation status. Ten thousand people are still unable to return home. As of this morning, the fire was 55% contained, and our hope is that it will be fully contained soon.

Our city will grieve the loss of two lives. We will support the 346 families whose homes were destroyed and the hundreds of families who will return to severely damaged homes. We have demonstrated during the past nine days that we are a strong, compassionate, and united community. We will continue to trust God. We will recover. We will be okay.


  1. Columnist: There is none so blind as he who will not see.

    We are grateful that you are safe. Fear? There is none so foolish as he who has no healthy fear when nature's forces threaten.

    Praise God in all things@!

  2. Vanilla, I do try to praise in all circumstances. Sometimes I become really self-focused instead.

    I found out yesterday that the Gazette columnist lost his home in the fire. So I have been praying for him all along. Probably, under the circumstances, the Gazette should have suspended his column for the week. They have received a lot of negative feedback.

    People of many faiths pray, but Christians were the one's who responded defensively. Interestingly, in our society, it is not politically correct for Christians and Jews to express their viewpoints beyond the walls of their meeting places, but others are affirmed and defended when they practice and propagate their faith publically.

    A conservative columnist here has received hate mail from many saying they hope her home burned to the ground, and one liberal website posted that they would know there really is a God if Focus on the Family burned. There have been expressions of hate from multiple liberal organizations. The intolerance is appalling, and these people are beyond frightening - hate mongers with no moral compass. The kind of people who cause heartache and war. End of rant!