As you may be aware, I live in the Colorado Springs area and we’re having massive wildfires. It’s pretty scary — I’ve honestly never seen anything like it. My family is safe for the time being as our house is a good ten miles away from where it’s burning. My husband is a wildland certified firefighter for the City of Colorado Springs and he’s out there on the front lines.

Many homes and structures have already burned as I write this, and I have several friends who’ve had to evacuate their homes. I just couldn’t bring myself to come up with a blog post today. Everyone in this area appreciates your prayers and good thoughts. If you want to help, the Red Cross is the best place.


Waldo Canyon Fire 1

Waldo Canyon Fire 2

Waldo Canyon Fire 3

Waldo Canyon Fire 4

Posted in

Rachelle Gardner

Literary agent at Books & Such Literary Agency. Coffee & wine enthusiast (not at the same time) and dark chocolate connoisseur. I've worked in publishing since 1995 and I love talking about books!


  1. fire prevention on April 9, 2013 at 2:33 AM

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  2. K-eM on October 25, 2012 at 2:27 PM

    Please hug your husband and give him a MASSIVE thank you from me. Because of him and the others, I still have a home.

    After we were allowed back home and I saw how close it came to us, I could envision where they stood and fought to keep it from advancing into our neighborhood as it devastated the neighborhood to the south and came right up to the homes to the north. I am so very, very grateful for him and all the others.

  3. Calla Jacobson on July 6, 2012 at 2:31 AM

    Just wanted to ask you to thank your husband. I live on the edge of Garden of the Gods and was evacuated, though it was only mandatory for a short time. Spent the last week in our primitive cabin in the mountains (no electricity, internet, or plumbing), west of Denver to get out of the heat and smoke. My husband fought forest fires in his younger days, long before I knew him. I have a quite renewed and intense appreciation for firefighters and the work they do. Waking up at 3 a.m. to drive away from everything we own just took the heart out of me. But we feel very lucky and very, very sad for those who were faced not just with the possibility but the actuality of losing their homes. And grateful to those who worked so hard to protect our city and our landscapes.

    But it is exhausting and disruptive to worry for so long.

  4. April Kempler on July 1, 2012 at 3:08 PM

    So sorry and horrified by the fire. I have gone through this myself when a fire terrorized my small community. By comparison thousands of homes were saved with only a few burned to the ground. Sadly, there was one fatality. I wrote my story for Yahoo!Contributor and I’m posting it here, not for any type of promotion, but to share my story. Please read if you wish to. Thoughts and prayers are with everyone, especially you and yours Rachelle. Best.

  5. BonSue Brandvik on June 30, 2012 at 2:38 AM

    Rachelle – You are facing my number one fear – being helpless in the face of an impending crisis.

    Mother Nature has an cynical sense of humor. As you watch your fires and pray for rain, here in FL, we broke all preexisting rain records… well over 12 inches in one day. We have an underground drainage system at our home that pipes excess groundwater to the street and the floodwater was hitting the grated street opening so hard that it shot straight up into the air. We had a 2-3 foot water fountain at the street for most of the day.

    Unfortunately, like body fat, you can’t donate your excess to those in need, no matter how much you would want to do so. We just have to watch helplessly and hope that Mother Nature tires of her joke sooner than later. I will keep you in my thoughts and hope you & yours are spared.

    As for writing, I believe you should not write for a few days. Instead watch, listen and absorb as much of the experience as possible. When the worst of the crisis passes, you will have acquired: 1)a whole host of three-dimensional characters, 2) the ability to write more believable tension/danger scenes, and 3) the ability to write stronger dialogue when trying to convey empathy, bravery, hopelessness, helplessness, anger and/or optimism.

    Most of all, remember: there’s nothing quite like watching the local news to remind you that your personal glass is still half full. Hang in there!

  6. Reba on June 29, 2012 at 1:15 PM

    Certainly have been praying for ya’ll, now will pray for the safety of your husband also.

  7. marion on June 29, 2012 at 11:00 AM

    Hi, Rachelle,
    Haven’t checked your blog in a few days–obviously!
    Not a restful weekend coming up for you, I guess–and certainly not for your brave hubby.
    God bless you and your hubby and your co-workers and everyone in that area. We’re seeing pictures on the international news in Egypt. Ridge after ridge engulfed in flames. Terrifying. And your pix give the close-up.

  8. Darlene Lund on June 29, 2012 at 10:13 AM

    This is late getting here, but prayers “for rain” and safety from many of us in MI have been offered up.

    God’s grace to you and your family and thanks to your husband,


  9. Rachelle Christensen on June 28, 2012 at 5:11 PM

    I’m thinking and praying for you and all those affected by fires right now. I live in Utah and although we’re 40 miles from the nearest fire, the smoky air and filtered sunlight is an ever-present reminder of those working to stop the fires. God bless your husband and all the amazing firefighters.

  10. Micha Boyett on June 28, 2012 at 4:58 PM

    Rachelle, so so scary. Praying for your husband and your girls. And for you. Peace…

  11. J M Cornwell on June 28, 2012 at 1:05 PM

    I had no idea you lived in Colorado Springs. I do as well and here in Old Colorado City the streets are much quieter and we all look to the west when we are outside. The end of the evacuation line is about a mile from my house. I keep working and looking and smelling the burning, but I’m here. My prayers are with your husband as he battles the fires and with your family while you wait and pray.

  12. heatherdaygilbert on June 28, 2012 at 11:56 AM

    So many prayers are being lifted for everyone in the path of the fires. Praying God will do a miracle to stop them.

  13. LLKing on June 28, 2012 at 11:44 AM

    Oh, Rachelle! My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family and everyone affected by this disaster.

  14. Tobi Summers on June 28, 2012 at 11:02 AM

    Listening to and watching the coverage has been breaking my heart. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family (and everyone affected).

  15. Keith Kreager on June 28, 2012 at 9:31 AM

    Thinking about you. Take care and stay safe.

  16. WRITING ON THE ETHER: Readers | Jane Friedman on June 28, 2012 at 9:02 AM

    […] photos she includes in her post, Fire, are from the endangered zone. They’re as dramatic as the fictions we might concoct. Many […]

  17. Jen Zeman on June 28, 2012 at 7:38 AM

    This is so awful. Please stay safe.

  18. MJ Donnery on June 27, 2012 at 11:37 PM

    Rachelle –

    You are in my thoughts and prayers…peace

  19. Tiffany Stuart on June 27, 2012 at 11:33 PM

    You and your family are in my heart every single day. If you need anything, our home is here and NOT in the pre-evacuation area. Or I have room for your dog if needed. Text me or call if you need anything. xo

  20. Melanie N. Brasher on June 27, 2012 at 10:57 PM

    Praying for you and your family.

  21. Mary Anne Benedetto on June 27, 2012 at 8:29 PM

    Many prayers for Colorado residents whose homes are threatened and for Florida flood victims as well. Prayers also going up for firefighters and crews assisting in both disasters. May everyone be safe.

  22. Lenore Buth on June 27, 2012 at 8:23 PM

    May God keep Brian safe and you and your girls, too. May He give you His peace, which passes all human understanding, as you wait for this horror to end.

    Our hearts and our prayers are with you all.

  23. LC on June 27, 2012 at 7:14 PM

    Best wished to you and your family. We regularly have small-to-medium wildfires around here, so I can relate.

    If anyone plans to donate to the American Red Cross: please keep in the mind that the most useful thing you can give ARC is money. Blankets, toys, clothes and so on are all very nice, but they’re a pain in the butt (and expensive) to transport and often aren’t the things that the people in the area need. (Remember the fur-coats-to-Florida debacle back in the aftermath of Hurricane Andrew). Money lets ARC buy whatever is most needed and to support their own people responding to the emergency.

  24. Peter DeHaan on June 27, 2012 at 7:02 PM

    I’m glad to know you’re all right.

    (No one will fault you for not doing a regular post today. Besides we’ll just have more to look forward to next time!)

    Be safe; be well.

  25. Sarah Schirmer on June 27, 2012 at 6:54 PM

    It is so hard to describe how I feel seeing those pictures of buring houses and streets. We’ve just visited Cathy and Jeff 4 months ago. Saw nice neighborhood, nice houses and several sight seeing places such as Garden of God. Who could predict in 4 months these all turned to ashes? This definitely makes me think hard what is most important in life. We pray for all residents and fire fighers. Pray for your health and safety.

  26. Dara on June 27, 2012 at 5:05 PM

    Praying for you and the entire area. My heart breaks for those who have lost everything. I hope that God sends rain soon!

  27. Kerry Johnson on June 27, 2012 at 4:27 PM

    Please know that we are praying without ceasing in Tampa.

    Heartbroken that our flooded streets and yards can’t help your state and extinguish the fires. Praying for God’s care and protection for your hubby and all the firefighters, and peace and safety for those evacuating.

  28. Krista Phillips on June 27, 2012 at 4:21 PM

    Those pictures are horrific. Praying for you all like crazy today!!! You’re in our thoughts!

  29. Joe Pote on June 27, 2012 at 3:33 PM

    Praying for you and all the others dealing with the wildfires, Rachelle.

    I have family located near Colorado Springs who have evacuated, leaving a home and a business in harm’s way.

    Also, other family members located nearby…

  30. Nichole Hall on June 27, 2012 at 3:25 PM

    My heart hurts for you and your family. Prayers going up for all who are affected by this devastation.

  31. Carol J. Garvin on June 27, 2012 at 3:09 PM

    Both fire and water are useful elements, but their extremes are devastating. There are such terrible floods and blazing infernos in the States right now! It’s impossible to comprehend the horror. I wish Colorado could import Florida’s rain.

    I’m praying… for you (and for your home) and especially for the safety of your husband.

  32. Melissa on June 27, 2012 at 2:46 PM

    My prayers are with all involved in these terrible wildfires. My brother and his wife live in Woodland Park and have evacuated their home early. It may not reach there, but just the ash and smoke is bad enough. I am praying they will get the fires under control and for the safety of the fire fighters.

  33. Jarm Del Boccio on June 27, 2012 at 2:39 PM

    I’m saying a prayer for all involved…thank you for making it more real with your photos. I had no idea it was so close to the residential area!
    Brave men are fighting those fires…thank the Lord for them!

  34. Mel on June 27, 2012 at 2:31 PM

    I lived in Colo. Springs for 8 years (since moved to back to Denver) and lived in a few homes in Rockrimmon and Mountain Shadows, from what I have heard from friends, the homes have been destroyed. Glad that you and your family are safe! Sending lots of prayers to your husband and all firefights that are trying to contain all 12 fires that currently burn in the state. Godspeed.

  35. Dolores E. Green on June 27, 2012 at 2:23 PM


    My prayers are with you Honey and for all of those being affected by this tragedy. I have a dear friend there as well so we are all praying for you!! God Bless, keep, and protect you and all of your family and friends and put and stop to this fire…


  36. Kristin Laughtin on June 27, 2012 at 2:17 PM

    I am glad you are safe and will pray that no more homes or lives are lost.

  37. Lisa Jordan on June 27, 2012 at 2:16 PM

    No words…

    Praying with a heavy heart to a mighty God!

  38. Julia Reffner on June 27, 2012 at 2:16 PM


    My prayers go out today to your family. We are so grateful to the bravery of men and women like him in these crises. I’ll be keeping you, Beth’s family, and so many others in prayer. I hope your kids are doing well.

  39. Catherine Johnson on June 27, 2012 at 2:03 PM

    That is frightening! Praying for you and your family. I hope your husband stays safe.

  40. Andy Mullaly on June 27, 2012 at 2:01 PM

    Hope everyone is ok. My cousin evacuated last night and was pretty certain her house was going to burn down. Here in San Diego we know exactly what you guys are going through with 2 enormous fires in the last decade. The most important thing is to remain safe and remember what is important.

  41. joylene on June 27, 2012 at 1:59 PM

    Oh my lord. The photos are frightening, yet breathtaking. We live in an forest fire area. My best wishes go out to you and everyone involved. Very scary.

  42. Ruth Taylor on June 27, 2012 at 1:53 PM

    I feel ya. The Houston skies were veiled with smoke for days when we had wild fires last year. Central and West Texas were the worst hit.

    Lifting you, your family, friends and the people of Colorado up in prayer.

  43. Patricia Stoltey on June 27, 2012 at 1:45 PM

    Firefighters (God bless them) are the most beautiful men and women in the world, and no one knows it better than we Coloradoans this summer. Having weathered the worst of the High Park Fire up here in the north, we’re now shocked and saddened by what’s happening in Colorado Springs and Boulder and other burn areaa across the state. We’ll keep you all in our thoughts and prayers.

  44. Robin Patchen on June 27, 2012 at 1:41 PM

    Praying for your family and your city. What seems out of control to us is fully within God’s control. I pray he will snuff out these fires quickly, and I pray that through this tragedy, He will be glorified.

  45. Maril Hazlett on June 27, 2012 at 1:30 PM

    Prayers for all of you in Colorado.

    My husband is a firefighter as well.

  46. Julie Scorziell on June 27, 2012 at 1:24 PM

    I’m so sorry to see that you’re going through this. Having been through two of the largest fires and evacuations in California, I feel for you. God is in control, though, even if it doesn’t seem like it. On the night the Old Fire was expected to hit a populated area of our mountain, a freak fall snowstorm arrived and put the fire out instead. When we saw a map of the fire zone later, it looked like a giant hand had been placed over the area that had been protected. There was no question whose hand that was!

    Check out Isaiah 61, especially verse 3, which says the Lord gives beauty for ashes, and please know that you and Colorado Springs are in our prayers.

  47. Lori on June 27, 2012 at 1:19 PM


    I hope you and your family will be safe. All of you are in my prayers especially your brave husband.

  48. K.L. Parry on June 27, 2012 at 1:00 PM

    Hi Rachelle,
    Living in California, I’m very familiar with wild fires. Scary stuff when you’re watching the mountains all around you burn. I’ve seen first hand the devastation it can cause. We here have to remind our selves that it is how this eco-system works. My prayers go out to you and those affected and to the firefighters and their families.

    I have also lived in Black Forest and Colorado Springs when I was a girl. In fact my youngest sister was born there in the 60’s.
    Several years ago I had planned a road trip that was to include a stop in the Springs but a freak spring snow storm had me re-routing on the fly. My sister and I never made it.

  49. Jeanette on June 27, 2012 at 1:00 PM

    Prayers to all Colorado Springs and your husband for his safety.

  50. Cynthia Herron on June 27, 2012 at 12:46 PM

    Rachelle, weeping as I type this…Prayers continuing!

  51. Carol Hatcher on June 27, 2012 at 12:41 PM

    Praying for the safety of your husband and the others fighting the fires, as well as those whose homes are affected. I’m so sorry. Blessings from Atlanta,

    Carol Hatcher

  52. Jessica Loftus on June 27, 2012 at 12:37 PM

    I’m praying for that area. I’ve already lived through seeing my own home burn down and I hope you were able to get all the important things together and ready to go in case it comes to your family to evacuate. I hope it doesn’t get to that point but I hope you’re family is prepared. I’ll be praying for your family and your husbands safety.

  53. Laura Diane on June 27, 2012 at 12:34 PM

    Prayers for your husband, your friends, your family and all in the area. I’ve experienced fires in So. CA and Idaho, not anything about them is fun, but communities find ways to share and come together during these times of stress.

    Your community here is very supportive and of course our thoughts, prayers, and funds are with the victims of such tragedies.

  54. Douglas Thompson on June 27, 2012 at 12:32 PM

    I live in southern California and see these wildfires on a regular basis. Three years ago the fire came down the hillside to the bottom of our street and we had to evacuate. The process of having to evacuate brings the importance of “things” into focus. Photos, letters & cards…basically the people in your life and your connections and memories of them jump to the front of the “can’t leave behind” line. God Bless you, your family and friends and that brave husband of yours. You are in my prayers.

  55. Ashley Bazer on June 27, 2012 at 12:28 PM

    While I live in Burlington, CO, I have family in the Colorado Springs area and I grew up on those mountains. We are praying non-stop. Many heartfelt thanks for what your husband is doing. He is wrapped up in our prayers as well. We so appreciate his efforts in fighting these terrifying flames.

  56. Jill on June 27, 2012 at 12:25 PM

    I’m married to fireman, too, and know how you must feel. And I’m so sad about Colorado Springs, such a beautiful place. 🙁 May God take care of your family and the others living in the area.

  57. Loree Huebner on June 27, 2012 at 12:24 PM

    Praying for you, your family, your hubby and crew, and your neighbors. Stay safe.

  58. Leslie on June 27, 2012 at 12:16 PM

    Prayers for you, your family, and your neighbors to be protected, to stay strong, and to remember that this,too, shall pass.

  59. […] morning Rachelle’s blog post  was simply titled, Fire. She wrote a short piece, asking for prayer as the wildfires rage, and […]

  60. Shelly on June 27, 2012 at 11:39 AM

    We went through a similar exerience last year in Texas. My prayers are with all of you. Praying that God will send rain and be a very present help (and refuge and strength) in your time of trouble.

  61. Bonnie Ferrante on June 27, 2012 at 11:31 AM

    I’m so sorry to hear about the fires. We’ve had the opposite problem in communities around Lake Superior – flash flooding due to incredible rainfall. I wonder if this is just the beginning of the backlash for decimating the global ecosystem.

  62. Chihuahua Zero on June 27, 2012 at 11:30 AM

    Wow. Those pictures. It’s a sight that can’t be seen where I live, but it must feel terrifying being around, with smoke and yellow light obscuring part of the sky.

  63. Mary Curry on June 27, 2012 at 11:28 AM

    Thank you. This is the most important blog post you could have done today. We’ve been thinking of you, worrying, and praying for all of you.

    I hope knowing you are lifted in so many prayers helps you stay strong.

  64. Heather Sunseri on June 27, 2012 at 11:27 AM

    You were one of the first people I thought of this morning as I watched with horror the news. I was pretty sure you lived in this area. Praying for you, your husband, family and everyone in that area affected by this.

  65. Clarice James on June 27, 2012 at 11:25 AM

    I am praying for you all–most especially the firefighters.

  66. Savannah Chase on June 27, 2012 at 11:24 AM

    Keeping you and everyone in my prayers. Just looking at the pictures is scary and heartbreaking.

  67. Casey on June 27, 2012 at 11:23 AM

    I’ve been watching the progress of this fire with terrifying fascination. Was (and will continue) praying for your peace of mind, husband’s safety and the safety of my friends there who have had to evacuate.

  68. Donna Pyle on June 27, 2012 at 11:21 AM

    Praying for safety, strength, and peace of mind for you, Brian, your sweet kiddos, and all involved. Sending lots of hugs and love, my Friend.

  69. Glenda Fowlow on June 27, 2012 at 11:12 AM

    Praying hard for y’all today. Be strong and courageous!

  70. Madeline on June 27, 2012 at 11:09 AM

    It must terrifying where you live even if you’re ten miles away. I hope the firefighters get it under control before the fire reaches you. We totally understand that you can’t find anything to write about. Honestly, I would be scared out of my mind even if it was that far. With the wind the fire can travel fast.
    We’ll all be praying for you.

  71. Arlene Coulter on June 27, 2012 at 11:07 AM

    I never met you, just heard of you at ACFW Conference last year, but I’m joining the others here in prayer for you and your family, Rachelle. May our loving heavenly Father grant you all peace and safety, working His perfect will out in your lives.

  72. Gwen Gardner on June 27, 2012 at 10:51 AM

    Rachelle, I’m up in Florissant and my daughter’s in Woodland Park. So tired of all the fires and smoke, but glad no lives are lost. I was interviewed yesterday from the DA’s office about an arsonist up here. Hope they get her (rumored to be a “her”). Hope your house makes it and glad you’re okay:)

  73. Lynn Rush on June 27, 2012 at 10:51 AM

    Oh my word. Those pictures are amazing. So scary! I lived in Castle Rock during the Hayman fires and that was scary These seem so much worse.
    Stay safe!

  74. Jan Culpepper on June 27, 2012 at 10:36 AM

    Praying for the safety of your family and home, for those imminently threatened by this fire, and especially for those on the front line, like your husband.

  75. Mary Ruth Pursselley on June 27, 2012 at 10:34 AM

    We’ll be praying for you, Rachelle.

  76. Lindsay Harrel on June 27, 2012 at 10:34 AM

    Praying for everyone who is affected! I cannot even imagine.

  77. Jessica Nelson on June 27, 2012 at 10:33 AM

    I’m glad you and your family are okay but am praying for others! Thanks for the update.

  78. Ann Bracken on June 27, 2012 at 10:31 AM

    My prayers are with you, and especially your husband. What amazing people they are, running in to a place most of us run from, in order to keep us safe.

    I’m across the mountains from you and we’re all nervous here, knowing we could be next. There are fires to the south. Let’s all pray for rain with no lightning!

  79. Karen Spears Zacharias on June 27, 2012 at 10:27 AM

    Praying protection for all those firefighters, and for those fleeing homes and farms and for all those animals who can’t flee fast enough.

  80. Katie @ cakes, tea and dreams on June 27, 2012 at 10:24 AM

    Adding my prayers to the chorus. Hope your husband, especially, stays safe.

  81. Laurie Buchanan on June 27, 2012 at 10:22 AM

    Rachel – I have three sisters-in-law in your same geographic location. We’re keeping you ZIPPED IN THE POD:

  82. Brian Henwood on June 27, 2012 at 10:21 AM

    My thoughts and prayers go out to you and you family, and all the families impacted by this tragedy.

  83. Ane Mulligan on June 27, 2012 at 10:11 AM

    Praying for everyone there. We have a couple of friends who live out there, too.

  84. elaine @ peace for the journey on June 27, 2012 at 10:07 AM

    Just wanted you to know that my prayers and thoughts are with all living in your area . . . all of creation that is breathing in the threat of fire and destruction. May the God of all comfort, strength, wisdom, and grace fall as fresh rain upon the soil of your heart, soul, and land.


  85. Turney on June 27, 2012 at 10:03 AM

    thoughts and prayers being sent…

  86. Marcy Kennedy on June 27, 2012 at 9:59 AM

    One of my husband’s oldest friends (who was a groomsman in our wedding) as well as my brother-in-law live there. Our friend’s in-laws were evacuated safely, but have already lost their home to the fires. The situation and all involved are in my prayers.

  87. Stephanie M. on June 27, 2012 at 9:57 AM

    Prayers for all those in harm’s way.

  88. Holly Russell on June 27, 2012 at 9:55 AM

    Father, You who knows all our needs, please be with the people of Colorado. People’s lives and homes are in danger Father. The firefighters must feel like they are up against a monster that is too big to contain. Be with them and give them hope. But You, our Father, know how to bring Beauty from ashes, and so you will prevail over this tragedy as well. The fire is intense, the blaze is hot, please touch every family who is touched by this fire with your Holy Spirit of peace. Shalom upon all of them.


  89. Katie Ganshert on June 27, 2012 at 9:54 AM

    Praying for you and your hubs, the rest of the heroic firefighters, for Beth, for everyone at Waterbrook/Multnomah, and for miraculous miraculous rain!

  90. Cindy R. Wilson on June 27, 2012 at 9:51 AM

    Rachelle, I will be praying for you and your family and all the others in Colorado, including my dad and his fiance (and her family). We can see the smoke in the sky from here in Littleton, and I feel so bad for everyone who’s had to evacuate. Will definitely be praying!

  91. Christine Dorman / @looneyfilberts on June 27, 2012 at 9:42 AM


    I knew about the fires and have been praying for everyone affected, but I didn’t know that you’re husband was a firefighter. He and your family will be especially in my prayers.

  92. Susan Bourgeois on June 27, 2012 at 9:36 AM

    I thought of you immediately when I first noticed the fire on the news.

    It must be scary. The pictures capture the magnitude of the strength of the wildfires.

    I’m familiar with evacuation with the numerous past hurricanes I’ve experienced in Louisiana and Florida, where I now reside.

    It is unsettling when you have to constantly monitor treacherous conditions.

    I know this must be stressful for your family.

    My prayers and thoughts are with you and your family.

  93. Cheryl Barker on June 27, 2012 at 9:36 AM

    Colorado has been in my prayers, Rachelle, and will continue to be. We live in SE KS, and we’ve vacationed in CO many, many times. It’s close to my heart — and my heart goes out to you all right now. Prayers for you and your family, and especially safety for your husband. Please be careful!

  94. Denise on June 27, 2012 at 9:34 AM

    Rachelle: God bless you and all those whom are affected. As Greg Braden says: We pray for the victims, the perpetrators, and the witnesses, or in this case, the woodlands, the firefighters, and the residents. I hope you remain safe and see the other side of this catastrophe very soon.

  95. Lori on June 27, 2012 at 9:29 AM

    Oh my gosh!!!! Colorado Springs is such a beautiful city too! My heart really aches for all of you right now. I don’t have the resources to give to Red Cross at the moment, but I can definitely pray! Lord, let there be a complete reversal of this invasive fire, totally contained and extinguished in Jesus’ name! Let every fire fighter be filled with Your wisdom, operating effectively and safely, and let every home, business, ministry and public service building be surrounded with protection and shielded from all harm! AMEN. God bless you Rachel!! <3

  96. Richard Mabry on June 27, 2012 at 9:27 AM

    Praying for all concerned.

  97. Colin Smith on June 27, 2012 at 9:24 AM

    Those pictures are both sad and awe-inspiring. Incredible. May the Lord be with you and your family, Rachelle. May He bless and protect your husband and all the other brave fire fighters as they try to contain this monster blaze. Indeed, I pray that He will protect the lives and homes of all those in danger. Keep safe!

  98. Melinda Viergever Inman on June 27, 2012 at 9:21 AM

    Praying, Rachelle. I have family there, too. What a frightening time! God bless you. Keep safe.

  99. James Larsen on June 27, 2012 at 9:14 AM

    We’re Laramie WY residents and have ties to Colorado Springs via the Military – this is absolutely horrible. We’re living in Australia at the moment and am deeply concerned about the rest of the Summer if the fire season is this bad this early. Prayers are with all of you in the Springs.

  100. Connie Almony on June 27, 2012 at 9:13 AM

    Praying for your husband, family and your community!

  101. Wendy Paine Miller on June 27, 2012 at 9:06 AM

    I’ve never seen anything like that. I keep scrolling up to look again.

    Thoughts = with you & others in CO.
    ~ Wendy

  102. Patti Phillips on June 27, 2012 at 8:49 AM

    Praying, praying, praying for you and your brave husband and your precious children. Dear friends of mine were in the Bastrop, TX fires last year. Ten miles is too close. Please stay safe.

  103. Angie Mizzell on June 27, 2012 at 8:48 AM

    When I saw it on the news, I thought about you and wondered how you and your family were doing. Thank you for letting us know. I can’t imagine what it must be like to be so close to the destruction.

  104. Summer on June 27, 2012 at 8:45 AM

    Wow…praying…my husband is a fire fighter too, but we haven’t had any fires like that around here, thankfully. I will be praying for his safety.

  105. Leanne Fournier on June 27, 2012 at 8:37 AM

    Sending prayers from Canada.

  106. Amy on June 27, 2012 at 8:32 AM

    Ten miles away!?! Didn’t you say yesterday on Twitter they were 12 miles away? Ack! They’re getting closer.

    The local morning news is discussing the fires right now.

    Sending prayers from Chicago . . .

  107. Sue Harrison on June 27, 2012 at 8:29 AM

    Walking in constant prayer for all of you, Rachelle. Love & Tears, Sue

  108. Angela Brown on June 27, 2012 at 8:22 AM

    Please continue to stay safe. I experienced my first wildfire a month after moving to San Diego a few years back. My prayers are with you and all those having to deal with the devastation.

  109. Pam M. on June 27, 2012 at 8:20 AM

    Praying for rain and miracles from the Lord to stop the fires.

  110. Lynn F. Casella on June 27, 2012 at 8:18 AM

    It’s frightening and in CA, we live every day with the reality of being burned out. My brother lost his home in the Malibu fire that marched from the SF Valley to the sea, but rebuilt a beautiful house with added sprinkler system for the roof and his house was on the beach. I woke up today to 5 helicopters whirring overhead…excitement a bear sleeping in a tree nearby. Took a drive for an errand and watched a brush fire billowing white smoke in the air, but it was luckily put out quickly. Danger lurks everywhere..main thing is have a plan and support our firefighters.

  111. Stephen H. King on June 27, 2012 at 8:18 AM

    Rachelle, my thoughts are with you.

  112. Kelly Thompson on June 27, 2012 at 8:11 AM

    We have friends in Colorado Springs and Estes Park impacted by the fires, and a buddy who’s a wildland firefighter from Montana who’s down there working. Here’s hoping you and your family stay safe. Thoughts are with you.

  113. Cheryl Rainfield on June 27, 2012 at 8:11 AM

    I hope that the fire gets put out very soon, and that everyone stays safe, It looks absolutely frightening. Sending you good thoughts. Know that people care.

  114. Amanda on June 27, 2012 at 8:07 AM

    It truly does seem that POV and other whatnots should be left off for the time being so we as a group can hold Colorado up in prayer. You and your family are heavy in my thoughts, and I pray God will keep you all protected and safe. In the face of such extreme circumstances, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed and lost, and that perhaps a prayer isn’t much. But, we serve a big God who listens and answers the prayers of the most insignificant. I just wish there was something else I could do.

  115. Trudy Metzger on June 27, 2012 at 8:02 AM

    Will continue praying for you, for your husband, friends and the entire community. So sorry this is happening. It looks horrific. Praying for safety.

  116. Perrin Conrad on June 27, 2012 at 8:00 AM

    Rachelle, I am praying for you, and for your husband and his co-workers out there. My husband is a firefighter in Charleston, SC, so I have an idea of what you might be feeling right now.

  117. Terri DeGezelle on June 27, 2012 at 7:58 AM

    Thoughts and prayers for you and your family and those affected by the fires.

  118. Joseph Baran on June 27, 2012 at 7:45 AM

    Incredible photos, Ms. Gardner. I can sense your uneasiness, looking at the pictures as they say what a thousand words could not. May God keep your husband and everyone else at the front line safe. I hope your ten-mile buffer gives you some peace and that you won’t lose your home. I know, easier said than done. Try to stay safe and God will see you through. God bless all!

  119. Kathleen Heady on June 27, 2012 at 7:44 AM

    Very frightening! I will certainly keep all of you in my thoughts and prayers.
    My parents were married in Colorado Springs in 1942, so it always has a special place in my life.

  120. Sharon A Lavy on June 27, 2012 at 7:44 AM

    Dear Lord, our heavenly Father look down on Colorado Springs and keep the people safe. Those who are fighting the fire, those who are losing homes.

    Be especially near to our sister-in-Christ, Rachelle Gardner, her husband and family as they go through this crisis with the people in their community.

    Bless them, care for them, and give them peace as they reach out to the others in their community.

    We love You, honor and reverence You, our Holy, Awesome God. amen.

    • Amanda on June 27, 2012 at 8:08 AM

      Amen, Sharon.

    • Sue Harrison on June 27, 2012 at 8:30 AM

      Yes, Lord.

      • Casey on June 27, 2012 at 11:25 AM


  121. Michael Seese on June 27, 2012 at 7:39 AM

    Rachelle —

    My thoughts are with you, and especially your husband.


  122. […] agent, Rachelle Gardner, lives near Colorado Springs. Her husband is one of the firefighters on the front lines of the […]

  123. Nancy Kay Bowden on June 27, 2012 at 7:29 AM

    If your photos weren’t frightening, I’d say they are brilliant.

    Every few months while traveling the kid-goes-to-college route I am awed by what’s left (or gone or what’s been rebuilt) after the destructive fires in the Bastrop, Texas area. Many charred, dead trees have been brought down; there are more to come. Wild flowers are springing up where forest was.

    You and your family and all those in Colorado Springs and other areas dealing with fire are in my prayers. May your husband be safe! He is a hero.

  124. Otin on June 27, 2012 at 7:28 AM

    I’ve been to Colorado Springs and to me it was one of the most beautiful places I have ever visited. It is so sad to see these pictures. I pray that your husband and everyone else stays safe.

  125. Robin Gilbert Luftig on June 27, 2012 at 7:16 AM

    Rachelle –

    I am sorry you and your family are close to harms way. Praying for you and your family.

  126. carol brill on June 27, 2012 at 7:12 AM

    somehow your pictures make it so much more real than the evening news. Sending my Prayers and thoughts

  127. Jennifer Major on June 27, 2012 at 7:10 AM

    It seems so trivial, all the contract this and POV that when fire is on your doorstep and your husband is out there.

    God bless you all.

  128. John Sauvé-Rodd (London UK) on June 27, 2012 at 7:07 AM

    I like this:

    Wind-driven wildfires are horrific, possessing a demoniac personality.

  129. Gwen Stewart on June 27, 2012 at 7:03 AM

    Such heartbreaking pictures, Rachelle. I fell in love with Denver and the mountains, so to see such destruction both in wooded areas and near homes is all the more horrible.

    I’ve kept your family, and especially your husband, in my daily prayers. God bless you all.

  130. Jana Dean on June 27, 2012 at 6:49 AM

    Prayers for protection and peace…!

  131. Patricia Awapara on June 27, 2012 at 6:47 AM

    Those pictures look scary!

    My prayers go out to you, your husband and all those who are expose to these fires.

    God Bless!

  132. Andrew Budek-Schmeisser on June 27, 2012 at 6:28 AM

    Prayers coming from New Mexico.

    Wind-driven wildfires are horrific, possessing a demoniac personality rather like Tolkien’s description of a Balrog.

    I’ve fought one, and I don’t ever want to do that again.

  133. Lanny on June 27, 2012 at 6:22 AM

    We’re praying for you and your family.

  134. Melissa Crandall on June 27, 2012 at 6:21 AM

    Those have to be some of the most terrifying images I’ve ever seen. Rachelle, our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family and friends. May this be over soon. (And a special extra prayer for your husband and the other firemen on the front lines.)

  135. Sue on June 27, 2012 at 5:25 AM

    I live in the Springs too on the corner of Vickers and Academy and I watched those houses burn from the apartment complexes yard tonight. Pretty scary.

  136. Mark R Hunter on June 27, 2012 at 4:56 AM

    Keeping you, your husband, and everyone out there in my prayers. I’m a volunteer firefighter here in northeast Indiana, but as bad as our brush fire seasons can get they’re never as bad as what can happen in Colorado. Today is our first Red Flag Warning for as long as I can remember — so I’ll likely be on the lines myself by the end of the day.

  137. Suzanne on June 27, 2012 at 4:09 AM

    I heard it on the news way down here in Oz. Keep safe. It looks horrible.

  138. John Sauvé-Rodd (London UK) on June 27, 2012 at 4:01 AM

    The pictures, Rachelle, are terrifying. Apocalyptic in scale. I hope the community and your husband fire-fighting get through this. In rainy Britain we don’t get fires like this; like the American flat-lands tornado and the Caribbean hurricane, huge natural disasters are unknown here.

    Quite by accident your posting has me remember one of the most dramatic forest fire descriptions ever in a book: in Shardik by Richard Adams, 1974; Shardik is a giant bear, twice normal size, with connections to pagan divinity; he first appears in the opening chapters, when a forest fire forces him out of the wild lands north.

    Has anyone written natural disasters in one of their books?

  139. SC Author on June 27, 2012 at 3:30 AM

    Don’t even THINK about doing a blog post! Those pictures make me scared as is…. oh gosh. Hope it all ends well, and good luck to everyone you know down there.

  140. Tammi T. on June 27, 2012 at 3:17 AM

    Will definitely be praying for you and the other residents there; as well as your husband and many others who are helping fight the fire.

    Thank you for making us aware.

  141. Mercey Valley on June 27, 2012 at 3:03 AM

    We had fires just like this in December last year. My parents’ former home was passed over while houses opposite were scorched or razed. Scary, and very bizzare.

    God is with you and doesn’t let go of you for a second, but don’t hang about too long. Parying for peace and safety, especially for your husband.

  142. Beth K. Vogt on June 27, 2012 at 3:01 AM

    Even though I’ve seen the ongoing devastation of the Waldo Canyon Fire with my own eyes, these photos still shock me. Incomprehensible … but horrifying true.
    Leaning into everyone’s prayers. Appreciate everyone’s support.

  143. Nancy on June 27, 2012 at 3:01 AM

    Praying for all of you, especially the firefighters! My son and his family are about five miles from the fire. Their car is packed, just in case the wind shifts. God bless!

  144. Camille Eide on June 27, 2012 at 2:48 AM

    God bless & watch over you and Brian, Beth Vogt, & others in the path of this thing. Praying God brings a swift end to it. Many of us are doing our best to stay caught up on FaceBook and are continuing to pray for the firefighters and the thousands of families affected. Thank you for sharing.

  145. Becky Doughty on June 27, 2012 at 2:41 AM

    Rachelle – we are praying. I’m so glad you reminded us that your husband is out there fighting for the lives and homes of so many. Praying for your children as well as I know that this must be a very difficult time for them too.

    We love and appreciate you.

  146. Heidi Murphy on June 27, 2012 at 2:37 AM

    My parents live in Pagosa Springs and are on evac warning right now. I hope you all are safe. I hope my folks don’t lose their house as they love it there.

  147. Gabrielle Meyer on June 27, 2012 at 2:33 AM

    My sister lives in the Denver area and she’s been keeping me posted about the fires near Colorado Springs. My prayers go out to everyone affected and those fighting.

  148. Cat on June 27, 2012 at 2:31 AM

    As an Australian who has seen the devastation these fires can cause here my heart goes out to you. Thinking of you.

  149. Judy Parker on June 27, 2012 at 2:24 AM

    Oh, Rachelle. Those pictures are truly incredible. Please know there are so many praying for you and your family and all those affected. My husband graduated from the AF Academy and we still have friends there. My heart goes out to you all. Stay safe.

  150. P. J. Casselman on June 27, 2012 at 2:24 AM

    Father we thank you that we can come to you at all times through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. We pray that you will pour forth your mercy upon those in Colorado Springs and all those in the path of these fires. May you protect them and their families and help those fighting the fires to extinguish the destructive flames. We pray for rain and that you will reign throughout this perilous time. Place a protective shield around Rachelle and her family and keep them safe. We put our trust in you, O God, for you have proven your overwhelming love and abundant mercy throughout our lives. May your name be praised.

    • Amanda on June 27, 2012 at 8:13 AM

      Amen, PJ!

    • Stephen H. King on June 27, 2012 at 8:16 AM


      • Casey on June 27, 2012 at 11:26 AM


    • Jennifer Major on June 27, 2012 at 12:05 PM

      Amen Pastor.

    • Joe Pote on June 27, 2012 at 3:29 PM


    • Me on June 27, 2012 at 11:07 PM

      I just gotta ask…if everything is part of god’s plan, than clearly these wildfires are part of it. So why would you pray to make them go away…? It seems to me that if it’s in his plan, than the prayers of the critical few will not trump that of the majority….?

      • P. J. Casselman on June 28, 2012 at 12:23 AM

        Hi “Me,”

        I’m not sure you’re asking a question or trying to make a point.

        Not all Christians believe the answer to your question to the same one. I’m Wesleyan, so this answer comes from my theological perspective.

        Here is an explanatory analogy:

        If I’m sitting on my sofa and I’m hungry, I can be proactive and get up and make something to eat or I can just sit here and passively expect food to drop in my lap. My wife shopped for the groceries, but she expects me to participate by helping to feed myself. Otherwise, I am just one big, passive, lazy lump on the couch.
        God chose to make our prayers and choices a part of His sovereign control of the world he created for us. He does this because he wants us to be actively involved and not passive lumps. Therefore, my participatory prayers are ordained as a part of His miraculous works.
        Faith is both reliance and relationship. When we pray, we acknowledge reliance and our request builds relationship. This is why Jesus said to ask anything in his name–faith and relationship.

  151. Diana Trautwein on June 27, 2012 at 2:23 AM

    I am so, so sorry about this – and it is frighteningly familiar to me. I am a resident of Santa Barbara CA and three years ago, we were evacuated twice in six months due to wildfires like these. I was on the pastoral staff of a church at the time – and the church was in the fire zone as well – we met to worship in a Country Club the first time and a local hotel the second. 20 families in our congregation lost everything – so I know first-hand that this is hard, so hard.

    Praying for safety for your husband and all who are struggling to hold the line and save lives and homes. Fires like these rouse fear that feels primal and deeply disturbing – so praying for peace of mind and heart for all of you who live in the middle of it all. Just heartsick to see this. Be well and safe, Rachelle.

  152. Kathy on June 27, 2012 at 2:21 AM

    As a Colorado Springs resident seeing these same sights, I’m so, so grateful for your husband and the others up there with him. Praying safety and peace over your family.

    • Christine Dorman / @looneyfilberts on June 27, 2012 at 9:50 AM


      You are in my prayers. Stay safe.

    • Jeanne on June 27, 2012 at 10:02 AM

      As a fellow resident, I agree!

      • Christine Dorman / @looneyfilberts on June 27, 2012 at 10:03 PM


        You are in my prayers too. Stay safe.

        • Jeanne T on June 27, 2012 at 10:14 PM

          Thanks, Christine!

      • P. J. Casselman on June 28, 2012 at 2:32 AM

        How are you doing now?

        • Jeanne on June 28, 2012 at 12:30 PM

          We are safe. We didn’t have to evacuate. It’s been devastating to see all those who have, to see the flames the other night, knowing people’s homes were burning and lives were forever changed. We’ve gotten a lot of the smoke. With an asthmatic child, this has been a concern, but we’re doing okay. Finding new things to thank God for in the midst of it. We’ve been very fortunate compared to some.

  153. Nick Thacker on June 27, 2012 at 2:21 AM

    Yup, we’re here too. Wishing your husband the best as he keeps us all safe.

    Luckily we haven’t been evacuated yet, but we’re just hoping no one is hurt!

    Good luck, and stay safe!

  154. Meghan Ward on June 27, 2012 at 2:14 AM

    My brother went to school in Colorado Springs, and I have family in Littleton. I’m not sure how close Littleton is to the fires, but those photos are terrifying. Thinking of you, your husband, and everyone affected by the wildfires in Colorado Springs.

    • Jeanne on June 27, 2012 at 10:01 AM

      Littleton is about 45-60 minutes north of the fires.

  155. Leanne on June 27, 2012 at 2:13 AM

    Those pictures are truly terrifying.

    My thoughts and wishes are with you and everyone affected.

  156. Keli Gwyn on June 27, 2012 at 2:13 AM

    My heart is so heavy. Continuing to pray for those battling the fires as well as the residents.

  157. Airicka Phoenix on June 27, 2012 at 2:12 AM

    Oh my goodness! I am so terribly sorry to hear this Ms. Gardner! I pray for your husband who is bravely doing his best to protect lives and livelihoods and for the unfortunate people without homes to return to tonight.

  158. Julie Sunne on June 27, 2012 at 2:10 AM

    Praying for relief and for the safety of homeowners and firefighters as well as others caught in the fire’s path.

  159. Shannon on June 27, 2012 at 2:09 AM

    I’m also from Colorado–from Arvada, in the Denver/Boulder area. So far my family at home is safe (I live in California), but it’s so heartbreaking to log onto Facebook and see status after status about the fires, including those from friends who are on ordered pre-evac and are packing. Every day it seems I get a new email from my mom about the fires, including today’s news about the one that sprung up near Boulder, in the Flatirons. I haven’t seen many photos from the Springs area, but that looks just horrible. I used to compete at horseshows at the Penrose Equestrian Center. Also, my last quarter of school I worked on a historical fiction novella set in Colorado Springs. The area definitely now has quite a place in my heart!

  160. Lizzy on June 27, 2012 at 2:08 AM

    Those pictures are intense.

    I’m glad you’re okay. Sending prayers to everyone up in Colorado Springs, especially your husband.

  161. Jeanne on June 27, 2012 at 2:08 AM

    Rachelle, I’ve been praying for your husband as he fights the fires. And for you and your family as you wait for him to come home.

  162. GunDiva on June 27, 2012 at 1:54 AM

    Stay safe down there. Up here, the fire is mostly terrorizing the mountain towns, but your fire is even more scary – it made it into the city.

    Be careful and prayers for your husband and all of the firefighters.

  163. Crystal on June 27, 2012 at 1:53 AM

    Rachelle, I’ve been following your blog for a year or more, and I’ve been following the fire since it broke out on Saturday. I am fond of Colorado Springs, and I grieve with you.

    Please know…you have people in Canada praying for you and your State, but especially your city. May God bless and protect your husband, and bring him home safely.

  164. Elizabeth M Thompson on June 27, 2012 at 1:50 AM

    Praying for God’s mercy and a quick end to the fires.

  165. Joanne Bischof on June 27, 2012 at 1:48 AM

    Wow. It’s just heart wrenching to see everything that’s been going on in Colorado Springs. I’ve been getting bits of news from my publishing house at the WaterBrook offices and it’s so scary to hear of so many needing to be evacuated. Praying for safety for all and for your husband, Rachelle, and his fellow fire fighters on the front lines.

  166. Heather on June 27, 2012 at 1:45 AM

    I have friends in Colorado Springs as well, and am watching in horror from up here in north Denver. Praying for everyone who is being affected.

    • Christine Dorman / @looneyfilberts on June 27, 2012 at 9:52 AM


      Your friends are in my prayers.

    • Jeff Willett on June 27, 2012 at 3:56 PM

      All of this is devastating and all of the general publics reactions are understandable. The pics resemble a war zone in your own neighborhood. The ultimate “mother of all ironies” is that several of the most sophisticated military air & ground institutions in the entire world are right there – the Air Force Academy, Fort Carson, and NORAD. And they can’t scramble an all-out overkill assault with something as simple as water in their own back yard. I bet if there was a national emergency, they could have 50 planes in the air in less than 30 minutes. I’m just sayin’.

      • LC on June 27, 2012 at 7:02 PM

        @Jeff: It’s not like you can tie a hose to an F-15. There are a small number of National Guard C-130s capable of carrying MAFFS (an aerial retardant-delivery system), and they’re already there. Down here in Southern California, we’ve occasionally had Marines out supporting the firelines, but that’s mainly because we have Camp Pendleton. Much of USFS’s aerial attack capability is contracted.

        The military is not the fire brigade. They’re not trained or equipped to do that. And the installations closest to the fire (NORAD and USAFA) have no assets capable of fighting fires.

      • Yo on June 27, 2012 at 11:00 PM

        You’re a dumbass hippie, naive to reality idiot.