On 25th of April a disaster occurred in Nepal – an 8.1 point earthquake. As I watched the newscasts the earthquake at that time has already taken more than 4300 people's lives with more than 8000 injured.
The disaster damaged 90% of the buildings in Kathmandu, people lost their dwellings, a tent city has emerged so as to avoid further earthquakes.
This earthquake bought to my remembrance the Wen Chuan earthquake on 12th May 2008. I was still studying in Malaysia. I saw that news at lunch time as that was when the earthquake struck. At the beginning I wasn't too worried about it, because there were quite a few previous earthquakes which didn't bring much damage.
However, it soon became obvious to all it was much more, and more so, Wen Chuan is only 400 km from my home town Chongqing. I tried to contact my family, but the lines couldn't get through. My mum was in Chongqing for holidays from Sydney. The earthquake was 8.0 point, and the core shaking point wasn't deep, rather close to the surface of the earth.
I have to say, at that moment I was so worried and I didn't know what to do. There were so many terrible thoughts flashing in my mind. I quickly calmed and started to think of ways to contact anybody in Chongqing to ascertain how this city was affected by the earthquake.
Fortunately, the internet was still functioning, even though the phone contact was lost. After chatting with one of my high school classmate, he said it was fine in Chongqing, but he said he could feel the building moving.
I felt relief. But I still couldn't get in touch with my family in Chongqing, they didn't have internet access. Having waited anxiously for more than 6 hours, I finally got in touch with my family.
My mum told me when the earthquake struck she was on the 23rd floor; the television in her room was jumping from left to right by itself. And then she realised it was earthquake. She quickly ran for her life down the staircases to the ground floor (no small feat) with my other family members.
Now to Sydney last Saturday with the terrible hail weather. I was driving from New Town back towards Ashfield, when it started pouring with rain – this was forecast. 5 minutes later, I heard the sound change on my car roof got – it got louder and louder, It was the little ice balls falling from the sky and striking the car. It was hail, the first time I had ever experienced hail.
The driver in front of me decided not to continue his journey, but stopped his car under a big tree beside the road. To me, he was a driver with experience driving in hail weather, so I didn't hesitate and followed him by parking my car behind, likewise under that big tree.
Then I saw the ice balls striking my windscreen. The ice balls were not striking fast when hitting the car as the tree branches and leaves reduced their power and speed.
At that moment, I saw the news on my iphone about the earthquake in Nepal.
This thought came to me at that time, 'Just have a little bit of faith' as I felt many would overcome - this hail weather and the earthquake. God has given man a spirit of overcoming.
I witnessed in Sydney petrol stations who had stopped their business due to the hail, and let drivers park their cars under the service station roof; on newscasts I saw rescue teams from around the world rush to Kathmandu to help find alive those in the rubble in that golden 72 hour period.
In such times, we are brothers and sisters. I could not but feel, that this is the way that God seeks all of us to live, serve and worship.
Oscar Duan is from China, he has an accountancy degree from University of Hertfordshire (UH) International campus in Malaysia, and has undertaken further accountancy studies in Australia for accreditation here. He is married to Heyley.
Oscar Duan's previous articles may be viewed at www.pressserviceinternational.org/oscar-duan.html