The Lake Elsinore Fire, The Aftermath

The recovery from the fire is more of relief and thankfulness. Our community changed for the better. The fire gave us a new hope for the people of Lake Elsinore.

I must apologies to those who were eagerly awaiting Part 2 of “The Spread of Lawlessness (Part 1)“. Due to the events of the Lake Elsinore fire, I felt it was more important to support my neighbors and friends with my writing, The Lake Elsinore Fire, Fear and Faith. The second part will come soon.

The events of the fire that ravaged the surrounding hills of Lake Elsinore, left many of us with anxiety and doubt. Many evacuated their homes, wondering if they would ever return. My wife and children were among those who left voluntarily, due to the smoke and toxins in the air. Our home was at risk to the fire, but our main concern was the health of our young children. The joy of seeing them return the next morning filled my heart with thanksgiving and praise. My wife was relieved that our home was in one piece; but I could see her eyes worn with exhaustion and stress.

“I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.” (‭‭Philippians‬ ‭4:13‬ ‭NASB‬‬)

As neighbors and friends returned to their homes, the impact of the fire could still be felt emotionally and by the senses of the body. Ash can be found in every crevice and crack and the smell of smoke still hangs in the air. Those who stayed, felt the lingering affects of sore throats and headaches, but no one complains.

As the ash begins to clear and the skies turn to blue, one thing is evidently clear; our firefighters did a job that was legendary. They held the line against our ravaging foe.

It is a story of miracles, with all the acres that were scorched and burned, no one lost their home. Deprived of sleep and exhausted from the heat; our beloved firefighters did their job, valiantly.

The tears that flow from Lake Elsinore are those of joy and relief. Other blazes around the state have not been as blessed. So to all the brave men and women that saved our homes,”Thank you”!

With every fire there comes new growth and something to learn. Something amazing happened to the people of Lake Elsinore. We put aside our anger and poisonous speech to help each other in our time of need.

“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” (‭‭John‬ ‭13:34-35‬ ‭NASB‬‬)

I saw neighbors talking to one another; building relationships on their streets. When one needed help another was near to provide aid. We put down our tablets and phones long enough to come out of our homes and talk. We worked together and organized a city. The enemy was not each other, but the fire that burned. Prayers were made and friendships developed, all thanks to a fire that raged.

People put aside their anger over race and politics to reflect upon their neighbors well-being. Some talked of organizing neighborhood watch’s, some of block parties and celebrations. Names were exchanged, handshakes were made. Some drank coffee together and others had a beer.

This was exciting to see, what may have turned ugly, united us all. Lake Elsinore has changed. It has united with a love of community. The fire may have purified us all. We put aside all the negative attitudes to love and help each other.

The lessons we learned, needs to be shared. Our politicians and those in the media need to stop their negative rhetoric. Both sides of the political aisle are guilty. The media is just as complicit. All forms of media must stop fanning the insidious flames of hatred. Nobody wants to see a civil war divide us all. Violence leaves us all with heartbreak and loss. So to those of influence, who dance in the realm of politics, please change your speech and find a way to common ground. If we do not change our ways, soon the smoke we see; will come from war.

“Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and be thankful.” (‭‭Colossians‬ ‭3:15‬ ‭NASB‬‬)

 

Author: Stephan Caraway

Sinner, Husband, Father, writer and follower of Christ. God knows I am a deeply flawed individual, yet He, Jesus, still loves me.

6 thoughts on “The Lake Elsinore Fire, The Aftermath”

  1. Lovely to hear no one lost their home and no one was killed. We can imagine there must have been an anxious period and lots of fear.Good to hear the fire did not win but the camaraderie or love and unity for the neighbourhood got strengthening the community and perhaps for many years shall have an extra meaning and a bond created. Is that not beautiful what may have turned ugly, united so many people who perhaps therefore were so busy with their own self?

    At the present times we may find lots of groups, certain church-leaders and several politicians who are eager to create division. When looking at the internet it looks already there is a war going on between the many religious groups and many political parties. We see the many forms of media which you would love to see stopping fanning the insidious flames of hatred. But problem is that we also may not be silent for certain situations. At the moment there are many evangelical groups and/or so called Christians who spread a lot of falsehood about Jews, real Christians and Muslims. If nobody would show others that those false preachers are creating hatred by such lies, there is a danger of the aversion growing by people who belief all that fake news. As you say “Nobody wants to see a civil war divide us all. Violence leaves us all with heartbreak and loss.” therefore we too would urge people to use their senses and always check what they hear in the media We also may not forget the responsibility leaders of a country but also leaders of a church do have in the way people shall look at the outside world and react to it. We too stand behind your call “So to those of influence, who dance in the realm of politics, please change your speech and find a way to common ground. If we do not change our ways, soon the smoke we see; will come from war.”

  2. Glad it is over and everyone is safe, but blessing of everyone coming together may not have taken place without the fire. Through the fire and on the other side glad there can be some silver lining 🙏🏾🙏🏾

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