Summer here in Australia is also known as "Bushfire Season" and with an ongoing drought over the last number of years it's been particularly dangerous. Last Saturday the weather was lethal. With the heat that reached around 46°C matched with high hot winds, the fires that started have ripped through our dry state. We have a number of massive fire fronts still roaring and leaving devastatingly destructive paths and haunting memories. Even new fires starting.
The pictures on all the news updates just boggle the mind. It's hard to comprehend. People have been caught by just how fast the fire is moving.
Hundreds of homes have been burnt to the ground, some country towns completely wiped out and--last I heard--there's been 130 confirmed deaths and that toll is still rising. This bushfire is now the worst my state has ever had!
The reality of this horror started to sink in yesterday. My auntie and uncle evacuated here from Marysville where the campsite they lived at and managed is now burnt to the ground. Both my brothers were called up by the Army Reserve Ready Response Force to go assist and they left this morning to help out where they can. Apparently my younger brother, Matthew, has been assigned to King Lake which was one of the worst hit areas. And also there is the realisation of so many lives affected obviously by death and homes lost but also schools and crops--people's livelihoods--huge amounts of people working to restore electricity to keep lines of communication open, those attending to the now homeless and distraught... the list goes on. And still I really have no idea.
God grant wisdom to all those fighting the fires and helping to deal with this tragic disaster and comfort to all the hurting. And please God, help them get the fires out quickly.