Church had just let out and the tornado sirens went off. People looked on their phones to see what the weather was like and if everyone was okay to travel or if we should go back inside the church and get in the basement. It looked as if there were a couple tornadoes around the area including one near the town we were going but we figured by the time we got there it would be gone so we decided to go ahead and chance it and head toward my parents house to eat our Sunday meal. You gotta understand that most of the time in Illinois when a tornado siren goes off nothing happens so we really believed we were going to be fine. Although, the extremely warm temperatures that day did give you an eerie feeling.
We are driving along, my mom and dad were in the vehicle ahead of us and they said to just follow them. In my car was my grandma and my two kiddos. While we were driving I see off in the distance what looks like a big cloud of smoke on the ground but when I looked up in the sky I could see the clouds rotating in a circle above it. I turned to my grandma and said, "I think a tornado is forming." I called my dad to tell him but they had already saw it. Not knowing which way the tornado was going to go we decided to keep driving straight. I felt comfortable following my dad knowing he would make the right decision as far as where to drive, but then I started to notice that he didn't know what he was going to do. He would slow down and put his turn signal on then continue going straight then slam the brakes on again and then go straight again. By that time the bottom and top of the tornado had connected and was heading our way getting bigger and bigger and closer and closer. I'm thinking in my mind that we are going to have to get out of the car and probably make a run for it to somebody's house so I have my grandma crawl back and unbuckle Bubby G. I kept trying to figure out how I was going to get both of my kids out of the car quickly. The winds were really picking up at this point and when I say that the tornado was basically right on top of us I am not exaggerating. We get into the town of New Minden and my dad suddenly takes a turn towards the east. The tornado was travel northeast. Apparently, at this point my parents looked in their rearview mirror and saw our car and it looked as if we were IN the tornado. At this point I get a phone call from Mr. G. About 5 minutes prior to this I had called him to tell him to go to go straight home and get in the bathtub because tornadoes were popping up all over the place. But when he called all I had time to say was, "We are in a tornado. Please pray!" And then I hung up. At this point our car was getting hit with debris but we were able to keep driving. Once we were about a mile away from the tornado was when I was able to turn and through our back window take a picture of it. We drove a bit farther and then stopped and watched the tornado pass by which was quickly followed by .....
Thank you, Lord, for Your safety during the storm. Thank You for allowing us to get away from the tornado and not endure any injuries. I pray for the families all around the midwest who have lost their homes or lost loved ones. I can't imagine what they are going through and I pray that through it all they will find peace and comfort through You. I also pray that You will show me and my family ways that we can help those in need. I love You, Lord. In Jesus name, Amen.