I grew up in Corpus Christi (the city that was expected to initially take the brunt of Hurricane Harvey.) As Harvey made landfall last week, I watched, along with the rest of the world, friends and family brace themselves for what proved to be the most substantial storm to hit the Texas coast, in decades.
My brother Brent, who lives in Houston, has been sending me pictures and videos of the utter devastation this jerk of a storm Harvey has created for millions of people. In one particular video, Brent filmed from a small boat, as he motored down a street engulfed by about eight feet of water. As he filmed the unsettling scene, his phone panned down to the water beneath him. Several feet below the surface of the murky water, you could scarcely make out the roofs of car after car. The pit in my stomach continued to expand as he filmed the homes these vehicles had drown in front of. Homes that once were havens of safety and sanctuary, now stood lifeless, abandoned, and eerie.
Harvey has created untold billions of dollars worth of devastation and loss. More than that though, are the intangibles Harvey has robbed. The single parents with no support, now displaced as they try and create something firm for their children to stand upon. The small business owner trying to make a difference in her community, now fighting to keep things alive. Harvey hasn’t just made an economic impact on us, but it has ravaged our most basic need for security.
The thing I have found interesting about this crisis, has been how the stories coming out of Houston and surrounding cities, have been ones of overwhelming support. I remember when Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans during my freshman year of college, and hearing of the horror it brought out in humanity. People became savage predators as they searched for weaker, more vulnerable people to take advantage of. While I’m sure there are cases of that happening in South Texas, it seems most everyone is on a mission to be a change agent for good. For example, JJ Watt has raised ten million dollars in Hurricane Harvey relief!
For the next week, all of the proceeds that come from the pre-sales of my new book “Becoming,” will go to a wonderful organization called “Convoy of Hope.” This is a time in our country where we are in desperate need to make a difference in the lives of people in pain. Together, lets help put back the pieces for those who have had so much taken away by Harvey.