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John Bressler - The forces of nature and God
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John Bressler

       Julie and I decided it was time, after about three or four years, to clean the windows and put up the screens for the approach of Fall and the cooler weather. Actually, Julie made the decision and it took me a bit to get motivated. Fear is a great motivator, by the way.
       As our dog, Down Girl Sit, watched, the screens were cleaned, repaired and put in place. The signs of the times were right because the sun seems to be shifting northerly, the grass is finally growing at a slower pace and even the surroundings appear both darker and deeper in color. The best sign is an evening below 70 degrees with just enough breeze to allow us to cut off the AC during the night. What I especially like is hearing the night sounds. I can hear them better when Down Girl Sit doesn't bark at the raccoon or possum who has been wandering by and looking for scraps.
       I was about to come up with a clever solution until Julie said, firmly, "If God doesn't punish you for those thoughts, I will." End of clever solution.
       There must be over 150 weather references in the Bible referring to: destruction, drought, floods, punishment, deliverance, direction and even end time warnings. The direction that the biblical writers posed was to interpret and understand the "Why?" While some folks of today might want to see the hand of the "Adversary" in the destructive power of weather, I think we need to realize that the theology of the Bible clearly teaches that all of creation and the forces of creation are under God's direct control. How we interpret those experiences are often up for grabs, metaphorically speaking. Or is that just an overused colloquialism?
       There are many references to prophetic interpretations when it came to some timely and very powerful displays of the weather: result of sin by the people, a leader, improper reverence and/or duty, just to name a few ideas. The fact was - and is today - that we cannot predict the weather to any degree of certainty. I take that back. Most folks around here will swear to the accuracy of the Farmer's Almanac regardless of what Prokop of our local station or even the words of The Weather Channel gurus. According to the experts, we are to have a cold and dry winter. The Almanac says to get out the slickers and umbrellas. I will go with the latter.
       Perhaps, just perhaps, we need to look to the forces of nature and ask, "What can we learn from this disaster, experience or situation? Can we be better prepared for the drought we know comes almost cyclically?
       How about the response to those who live on the coastal regions who will absolutely be in the path of a hurricane yet to be? I suppose God could do a better job of letting us know ahead of time, but would we be any more ready than before?" As old Shakespeare wrote, "Tis a consummation devoutly to be wished."
       I have been waiting for the cool weather for a long time. I apologize now because I know it won't be long until I will catch myself saying, "I sure could use some of that warm weather." I should bite my tongue.

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