April’s Fury and God’s Grace

words from my precious friend Leigh Ann {Ammons} Pearson…

387304_10151354034121879_574924536_n He alone is my Rock. I will not be Shaken. Psalm 62:6

 April 27, 2011 – Wednesday April 27th began like any other day for me. I got up, got dressed and went to work. I had no idea that that would be the last time I would do that from my home, my neighborhood, the place I grew up and loved so dearly. 

 I had that gut feeling all day long that something was just not right. I paced back and forth to my friend’s desk at work giving updates on the weather and letting her know how I had this un-easy feeling. My office made the decision to close at 2:45. The first of many decisions that day that saved my life and kept me from harms way.

 I arrived home around 3:30. My Dad had decided to take the day off from work because of the weather, something he has never done and another decision that saved our lives.  We all paced the house waiting on the storms to hit. I sat in awe as I watched the tornado rip threw Tuscaloosa. Then reality set in. That same tornado is headed straight towards us. You see, our home did not have a basement. Our tornado plan was to pile in the bathtub or to get into my bedroom closet. My Dad, at the last minute, decided we should head to our dearest friends house on the other side of Pleasant Grove to get in their basement, another decision that saved our lives. Before we ran out the door I threw a few things into a bag, put on my tennis shoes and grabbed my pillow. We all loaded into the car and backed out of our driveway for one last time. We arrived at the house right as the wind was picking up and rain became heavy. You could feel the pressure changing in the air. We headed down to the basement. The storm began to hit. Trees and power lines ripped away and houses where destroyed. Then as the storm lifted we heard a silence like none other. An eerie silence, a silence I will remember for the rest of my life.  God spared the house we where in that night and our lives. We walked outside and our hearts sank. You could see for miles…nothing was left. Our hometown was gone. I started getting phone calls from family and friends. I realized quickly that even though our home was gone God was an amazing God; my friends and my family who I cherish were all alive. I could feel Him at that very moment wrap His arms around me. I knew everything was going to be ok.

The next couple of days were a nightmare. The National Guard arrived. Curfews where set in place and everyone began digging through the rubble trying to salvage any memories they could.  It’s been 2 weeks since the deadly tornado when our world was turned upside down. But, as the dust is beginning to settle all I see is God’s Amazing Grace! I look back on the past several years of my life; I realize I have been through many ups and downs. I made a commitment to myself to live a Godly life and became involved in Sunday school for the first time. I was introduced to the most amazing prayer warriors who taught me the importance of the power of prayer. I learned how to listen to God’s voice. I know He was preparing me for April 27, 2011. If I was not in the place I am now I would not have been able to pick myself up, dust myself off and praise His name. He saved my family and friends for a reason. I can’t wait to discover the plans He has for me!

The old hymn “I’d Rather Have Jesus” has always been one of my favorites. The words mean something completely different to me now. Below are the lyrics.

I’d rather have Jesus than silver or gold
I’d rather be His than have riches untold
I’d rather have Jesus than houses or lands
I’d rather be led by His nail-pierced hands

Than to be the king of a vast domain
Or be held in sin’s dread sway
I’d rather have Jesus than anything
This world affords today

I’d rather have Jesus than men’s applause
I’d rather be faithful to His dear cause
I’d rather have Jesus than worldwide fame
I’d rather be true to His holy name

I’d rather have, You, Jesus than anything
This world affords today
I’d rather have, You, Jesus than anything

I would like to thank my family, friends, co-workers and complete strangers who have supported us during this time. I have felt all of your prayers and the love of God has shown through each of you. I’m so ready to see what God has in store for the next chapter of my life.

“Through the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed,” says the LORD, who has compassion on you. Isaiah 54:10.

The LORD is my strength and my defense; he as become my salvation. He is my God, and I will praise him, my father’s God, and I will exalt him. Exodus 15:2.

 Love to all,

 Leigh Ann

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  • Thank you God for leading me to such a wonderful church full of such wonderful people. Thank you Leigh Ann for sharing that. I love that song and was so blessed when Jarred sang it Sunday.

  • What a testimate! I’m so very thankful that God was in control, kept you, your parents & all our amazing friends & church family safe! What an awesome God we serve, to lose all that you have & show the faith you’ve shown your an amazing witness of God’s love, a treasured friend & a Woman Of the Word, WOW! (that was for Nat’s benefit)
    Love you so, so much!

  • Leigh Ann, that is a wonderful and tear making story that you posted for everyone to see and know how much you love the Lord even in the midst of destruction and loss.
    I am so very proud of you for making the decisions that you had made before the tornado. That does show that the Lord is in control and that He is faithful to keep those who are fatithful to Him.
    I, too, am very happy that you and your family are ok. Worldy possessions can be replaced – but the wonderful Ammoms family cannot. Thank God for His Awesome Mercy and GRace!!! Than God for saving the Ammons family and bringing you through the fire again. I love you and am all the more thankful for your life and your witness for the Lord!!! Momma B

  • The tears are starting to dry now after reading your precious testimony! What a testimony to what our God can do in us if we are willing. Living in Mobile, we watched in total disbelief at what so much of home state was dealing with because of the weather. We have been praying and giving and bringing supplies but we can’t begin to replace what you have lost. But after reading your words I realize what you found was of eternal value! May the Lord continue to show Himself strong each and every day.

  • I told you I’d read this tonight and I fought with my computer until I got it to work. I am so very thankful that it turned on so I could read your amazing story. God has big plans for you Leigh Ann and I’m so proud to call you my friend! I think the world of you and love you bunches! LOVED IT!

  • Leigh Ann, I truly enjoyed meeting you and your Dad today. You truly are blessed by God and you are a huge Blessing to others in your walk and testimony. May God always watch over and bless you and your family. Your Dad was right that you are very talented in your writing. Thank you for sharing your testimony.
    Perry Willie, Finance Manager CRM Motors