Tuesday, October 23, 2007

URGENT PRAYER REQUESTS – Behind the Scenes with the Southern California Fires

Let me add a few human faces to your awareness of the disastrous fires raging out of control across Southern California. In the process, let me also solicit your prayers on behalf of those who are being impacted by the fire storms.

A couple of weeks ago, I flew to San Diego to stay with my friends, Craig and Lauren Balben. Together we attended Game #3 of the Red Sox – Angels American League Division Series (More about that in another posting). I stayed in the Balben’s apartment in Sabre Springs, near Poway. Yesterday, as the Witch Creek Fire fire raced in their direction, they evacuated their home to stay with Lauren’s mother in nearby Bonita. Last evening, it became clear that Bonita was also in danger of being in the path of another rapidly advancing wildfire - the Harris fire, and they decamped to Coronado – safely across the water from the main portion of San Diego.

I received a call last night from my friend, Mike Harris. Mike is a New Englander and an ardent Red Sox fan, but he now lives in Colorado. Instead of our conversation focusing, as you might imagine, on the upcoming World Series between the Colorado Rockies and the Boston Red Sox, Mike was calling to inform me that he had just received a call telling him to prepare to travel to San Diego. Mike works as a fire fighter, primarily fighting forest fires in the Rocky Mountains. So, ironically, Mike Harris is being sent from Denver to fight the Harris fire in San Diego County.

As I read the updates this morning, it is clear that these are very dangerous and devastating fires that are being fueled by a long draught and vigorous Santa Ana winds. The fires have already claimed victims among residents and firefighters, and have destroyed countless homes and businesses. As you go through your day, please keep in your thoughts and prayers my friends – Craig and Lauren Balben and their family, and Mike Harris and the hundreds who are fighting the fires up and down the coast of southern California.



Mark said...

Thanks for the reminder, and the human face, Al.

Brad T said...

Thanks for the update Al. Craig is my cousin, and I had tried to contact him yesterday. Thanks to this blog I can pass on his well-being to the family!