Monday, January 03, 2005

The Water Seemed to Stall Momentarily

Missionary saves his orphanage...with prayer

From With little warning, director saves 28 orphans from tsunami - 12/29/04:

"The orphans' ordeal did not end when their boat pulled away from the shore.

Not only was water cascading over the lagoon side of the peninsula, but it also was pouring in directly from the mouth of the estuary about two miles away. Sanders feared the converging currents would swamp the small craft. At that point, Sanders said, he recalled a line from the Book of Isaiah: 'When the enemy comes in like a flood, the spirit of the Lord shall raise up a standard against it.'

He raised his hand in the direction of the flood and shouted, 'I command you in the name of Jesus -- stop!' The water then seemed to 'stall, momentarily,' he said. 'I thought at the time I was imagining things.' With the water pouring into the mouth of the lagoon, he then began to worry that waves would overtake them from behind, swamping the small boat. Reasoning that it was better to hit the waves head on, he said, he ordered the driver to reverse direction and head back toward the open ocean.

But that maneuver carried its own risks. As it made for the mouth of the lagoon, the boat was broadsided and nearly capsized by the torrent pouring over the peninsula. 'The children were very frightened,' Kohila Sanders, 30, recalled. 'We were praying, 'God help us, God help us.''

As the waters began to roll back out to sea, the turbulence subsided. It was then, Sanders and his wife recalled, that they became aware of the people crying for help as they bobbed in the water nearby. They were villagers who had been swept off the peninsula. The passengers rescued one young man, who was 'howling for his missing wife and daughters,' Kohila Sanders said. But they had to leave the rest behind. There wasn't any room.
'People were crying, 'Help us, help us"