Friday, February 01, 2013

Remembering the 1953 flood in Holland


My friend placed some pictures of the flooding that happened here in Holland in 1953 (now sixty years ago) on her quilt blog Sweet Home Ala Marja. One of the pictures shows our house, all the way in the lower left corner.

Our town is situated on a dike that is supposed to keep the water out (remember that most of our country is below sea level). But on January 31st in 1953 the dikes broke in several places and parts of the country flooded and thousands of people were killed. Many survivors remember that horrible day all too well.

Sometimes the water in the river still rises to dangerous levels, especially during a storm and full moon. 

I was born ten years after that national disaster, but I remember looking, together with my brothers, through the book The Battle of the Floods. We were filled with fear and sorrow when we saw the pictures of people in boats, of houses covered in water and of dead animals. We even recognized some parts of 'our dike' in the book. We really hoped nothing like that would ever happen again in Holland.

Natural disasters are not new, they have always happened. Noah witnessed the earth being under water for 150 days. In the Bible we can furthermore read about storms, droughts and earth quakes. The battle between mankind and the elements is a battle of all times. Cold, heat, drought or floods... they come and go, as do the opinions about our climate changes. Too cold, too wet, too warm or  too dry... Do we have to worry?

The Bible says:
As long as the earth endures, seed time and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night will never cease.
(Genesis 8:22)

13 comments:

  1. Thank you, Marja, for sharing some of your country's history with us. The picture of the houses make this stand out.

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    1. You're welcome Cecelia, for such a small country we do have an interesting history...

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  2. That would be so scary to see a picture of your own house during a flood! Thankfully improvements have probably been made since that flood disaster in your town. Interesting post, thanks for joining the Random Journal Day!

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  3. Thank you for sharing this part of your history with us. That would be indeed a frightening way to live...even though we all have things that could happen in our parts of the world that could be devastating as well...we tend to forget, or think they never could happen to us. Thankful that we have the Peace of God to keep us and carry us through this life. Welcome to Random Journal Day! Hope to see you again!

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    1. When I lived in california I thought earthquakes were scary, but they thought that living below sealevel was crazy :)

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  4. Marja, I am so glad you joined us! Oh it sounds so heartbreaking to see images. I think one of the reasons I don't watch the news stations these days is that the images - films overwhelm me. It's one thing to know, see, experience and look in a book but God has not ordained that we all see as much as the news stations reveal ... the media sometimes overloads us, burdens us with too much. Yet words can minister so well and we can handle bits seasoned with truth. Thank you for sharing these words, memories and images. We do not need to worry...I remind myself He is not surprised by anything. Hope you will join us next month!

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    1. Hi Dawn, I totally agree with you... we don't even have a television because I do not need or want to see everything that is going on in the world...
      Hope to join you again!

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  5. Oh, my! What devastation! And so many killed. I pray that never happens again!

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  6. Hi Marja -

    I guess the people in New Orleans can relate well to your story of flooding. Their levees failed as Katrina blew through their city.

    The only natural disasters I've been through are the blizzards and occasional hurricanes that hit the Northeast. Thankfully, Hurricane Sandy didn't do too much damage to my area.

    Blessings,
    Susan

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    1. Yes, the levees breaking is about the same as the dikes breaking in Holland Susan, scary thought!

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    ReplyDelete

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