Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Miracles in Mississippi

"Suddenly a terrible storm came up, with waves breaking into the boat. But Jesus was sleeping. The disciples went to him and woke him up, shouting, 'Lord, save us! We're going to drown!' And Jesus answered, 'Why are you afraid? You have so little faith!' Then he stood up and rebuked the wind and waves, and suddenly all was calm. The disciples just sat there in awe. 'Who is this?' they asked themselves. 'Even the wind and waves obey him!'" Matthew 8:24-27(NLT).

My home State of Mississippi suffered the devastation of tornadoes on April 24, 2010. There are many stories of tragedy which emerged; however, there are two incredible stories of God's protection. Dale Thrasher of Hillcrest Baptist Church, Yazoo City, MS was at his church when the tornado hit. He sought refuge under the communion table. Only the communion table and Dale Thrasher were left standing after the tornado. Click the link Deadly tornado crushes Yazoo City church, not its faith - to read his story of God's protection.

A friend forwarded me Tara Mitchell's story. I do not know her. You cannot read her story and not know that God is still in control and He still performs miracles in our midst. Here is Tara's story in her own words:

Mac, Momma, Uncle Charles and I were on the way to Mom's (Merigold, MS) from the Mt. Salus Pancake breakfast in Clinton, MS, and stopped in the Wendy's at Yazoo City to use the restroom. As we got out of the truck we heard the tornado siren going off. We all went in the Wendy's and used the restroom and then were going to sit out front in the lobby till the storm passed by. We had been seated maybe 5 minutes when Uncle Charles and I noticed rotation in the top of the clouds. I think it was around 12:15-12: 20 based on my cell phone call to my dad at 12:55 letting him know we came through everything okay. Uncle Charles says, "I think we outta move away from these windows." Mom laughs and says, "I don't know about you all, but Mac and I are going under that table." There were I think, about 8 staff working and around 5 other customers, with three people coming in minutes before we moved to the restroom. As soon as mom said that, a man called out, "We need to get to the bathroom", several people began trying to call out on their cell phones, and went to the window. The man yelled, "Get off the phone and get in the bathroom." Looking back it was amazing, we hurried but nobody ran or pushed or anything, we all went into the ladies restroom, the manager said, “Some of you men can go in the men's room," and one man replied, "I am coming in here with you all!" I stood with my back to the wall, on my right was a worker lady standing behind the open door. Mac was on my left and Momma on his other side. Uncle Charles was looking out the door. I told the worker lady to close the door. As soon as she did, we heard a sound like a cannon firing and the lights went out. We now know it was the tornado taking out the Save a lot and Peebles next door. Then the ground began to shake, it traveled up through the concrete floor, through my feet and legs to my back. Then the wall began to press in on me, as if hands were pressing it into the room. Momma began to sing Amazing Grace and people began to cry and wail. Mac said,” Hush Grandma” and I said, “ Momma stop,” her singing was making people afraid. The strangest thing was I was not afraid. Looking back I thought, "Why didn’t I cry out to God to keep Mac safe? To not take my child, to help us? Instead I heard Joyce Meyer's voice say, "Thank HIM for things HE hasn't done for you yet", so I began to pray aloud, "thank you Jesus that I have right standing with you, thank you Jesus that my son is sanctified, thank you God that you are here in our midst, thank you Jesus that you have a good future planned for me, that you love me and that your hand is over this room right now between us and this storm," Uncle Charles called out "Lord somebody help me, help me hold the door the door's coming open" the door opens into the room and it (the tornado) was pressing on the door. This courageous man with one lung, diabetes, and a heart condition held the door closed by himself and helped to protect all of us. I then recalled my granny's favorite song, “Till the storm passes by” and I said, "Thank you God for holding me fast and letting me stand in the hollow of your Hand as this storm passes by." As I said those words I felt a pressure over me, a pressing down and all around. Look, I am an educated woman and have taught science for 11 years, I know about G-forces and winds and tornados.


I now know how Moses felt in the cleft of the rock on the mountain, when God placed His hand over him and walked by. We walked out of that PERFECT restroom, not a tile in the ceiling out of place, not a brick nor tile on the walls out of place, the rest of the Wendy's was destroyed. the brick walls gone, the steel beams and windows gone, the ceiling tiles in the rest of the Wendy’s hanging or on the floor, but our room where God covered us was in perfect condition. I turned to a young man who was a worker, it was his birthday and he was wearing dollar bills pinned to his shirt, I looked at him and the other Wendy workers and said, “Before you all step out of this room, I want you to look at it, look at the ceiling, the walls , the floor, it is in perfect condition. God was in this room with us, young man, happy birthday, you now have a tale to tell about your birthday and I hugged him and he said , “Yes mam, I surely do and I thank you.“ The lady that stood next to me during the storm, cradled in my arm, turned to me and said, “And thank you for praying." I am telling this to let you know that GOD IS REAL, HIS HAND is not weak, and He knows exactly where you are. If you don't know HIM, if you don't have a personal experience with HIM, you are not living but dead men's bones. HE IS REAL, and HE LOVES US everyone. Talk to HIM now, today, don't put it off.

My son Mac reminded me I forgot to mention the 18 wheeler gas tanker that was parked behind the Wendy's, in 165 MPH wind it should have been thrown into Wendy's and exploded. Not only was HIS hand over us, it also kept that truck in place. All the other cars had broken windshields or windows and debris over them. Uncle Charles’s truck "Baby" as he calls it, didn't have any debris or broken windows, barely a scratch on the hood. We were able to drive out and drive home. I just cannot say enough about the string of miracles God did in that half hour. HE IS REAL!

Some of the funny moments occurred right after we walked out into the wreck of Wendy’s. Uncle Charles turned to a lady on his right and asked, “Can I get my chicken sandwich now?” That lady that had been crying and scared began to laugh and said, “Man, I don’t wanna hear about no chicken sandwich for a LONG time!” Uncle Charles replied, “I think I deserve a chicken sandwich," and then they hugged each other. A few minutes later a policeman poked his head in where the wall used to be and asked if anyone was hurt, and we all replied no, we were all okay, to go help someone else. Uncle Charles said, “Wait, let me check my pants, something might be missing, “ He had us all cracking up and laughing through the tears. This man who is daily on death’s door, with diabetes and one lung and major heart problems, helped to save us through the storm and helped us come out of our shock after it was over. He lost a lung to cancer several years ago and after two years his heart shifted over in the empty place where the lung had been causing the hole in the back of the heart that usually closes when you are an infant, to reopen. He was the first adult to have heart surgery to close this hole that survived. All others who had this type of procedure had died. He has almost died so many times and he kept saying he didn’t know why he survived when other’s hadn’t. I think maybe it was so he could hold that door closed with God’s help and save people from that tornado, we will never know but he gave God all the credit. I just have to tell everyone how great God is and how His hand is not shortened that it cannot save nor HIS eyes blind that He doesn’t see your need, nor HIS ears deaf that HE cannot hear your cries. Talk to HIM today.

I was so moved by Tara's story that I had to share it. We forward bad news and prayer requests. How often do we forward news of how God is working miraculously in our lives? Tara's story still brings tears to my eyes and confident hope to my soul. Click the newspaper link Tornadoes rake Mississippi, at least 10 dead | | The Courier-Journal for a blurb about the Wendy's in Yazoo City, Mississippi.

A mentor and friend sent the following reply later that day:

If you just read the amazing wonder sometimes if these stories are true. We were having our house sprayed for termites today and the man who came to the door said he was from Yazoo City and was driving around in the storm not realizing it was happening. Said his sister in law worked at Wendy's and he began to tell me the story that I had read about 10 minutes prior to answering the door. Printed him a copy and sent him on his way....humming Amazing Grace to myself.

There is no doubt that God is in control and that He still moves and intervenes on our behalf. He is our stability. He is our help and our rock when the storms of life are swirling all around us and we feel we have nothing to hold onto, lean on, and no foothold to keep our balance.

"I am leaving you with a gift-peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give isn't like the peace the world gives. So don't be troubled or afraid." John 14:27(NLT).

It is devotion carnival time again on Rachel Olsen's blog. Click here to hop over to her blog and read other devotions on stability. May God bless you. May we be reminded that God is our rock, our protector, and that He is still in control.


  1. What a powerful story. Thank you for sharing! I couldn't help but count the number of tornados I had been in (growing up in WI). Starting with the one on the day that I was born.

    Our God is amazing. He is sovereign and like you declared, He still moves and intervenes on our behalf. He is indeed our stability. God is beyond amazing! All glory to God.

  2. It gives me goosebumps to hear such stories & God's grace & protection.

  3. That is an amazing story!! Thank you for sharing!

  4. Big, wet, sloppy tears reading your post. I had to stop and blow my nose half way through this.

    I got some terrible news tonight - your post was very comforting to me, Heather. Thank you.

    Blessings ~ Rachel

  5. I am so glad that Tara Mitchell and Dale Thrasher's stories impacted you all. We read of God's miracles and intervention in human circumstances in the Bible; however, we are not reminded often enough of His continual intervention in our circumstances. He still moves and acts on our behalf. He still performs miracles. I wish the national media would have picke up Tara Mitchell's story. There is no other explanation that the people in that Wendy's are still alive other than God controls the heavens and the earth and He protected them during that F4 tornado. Blessings to you all.