Eight years ago, when my husband retired from the United States Air Force and went into trucking, I didn’t think of it as trading one “heroic” occupation for another.
Today I do.
He delivers to warehouses in South Carolina bread baked here in North Carolina. The warehouses, in turn, deliver the bread to individual stores.
My husband is an unsung hero.
I didn’t know it until last week when Hurricane Matthew came through and disrupted all our lives.
Suddenly, everyone was in need. Some people needed to be airlifted from rooftops. Others just needed water, which seems ironic, considering our problem stems from too much water—just none to drink!
Whatever the need, one thing became clear: we need each other.
We need workers to keep the power going…
To keep the water flowing…
(And to make it drinkable!)
This week we need delivery trucks to find ways around hundreds of washed-out roads and highways.
We need our daily bread.
What we sometimes forget is that those whose job it is to meet our needs have needs themselves.
As the crisis wears on, tempers flare. That hurts everyone.
I’m reminded of Dr. Anna Pou, the Louisiana cancer surgeon who lived through a nightmare in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. After flood waters knocked out the generators in that eight-story hospital in New Orleans, many fled. Dr. Pou, however, remained, doing what she could in excruciating conditions, which included sweltering heat and total darkness, to save and evacuate as many patients as possible. She was among the last to leave. I cannot imagine how she must have felt when, nearly two years later, she was arrested and taken to jail in handcuffs, charged with second-degree murder in the deaths of four patients who died during that crisis.
I can’t imagine what the following year must have been like for her as a grand jury considered her case.
When the grand jury refused to indict, everyone who knew Dr. Pou cheered, including her patients.
Dr. Pou later helped get legislation passed to protect doctors and nurses working in crisis situations.
So what am I trying to say? What does that story have to do with delivery trucks?
Take nothing for granted.
Most of all, heed the words of Jesus: “Love thy neighbor.”