|Posted by ruthsmithmeyer-com on August 4, 2013 at 4:45 PM|
The news so far this year has been full of tragedy—natural or that precipitated by human error or depravity. The list is long—tornados, floods, wildfires, mass shootings, terrorist bombings, kidnappings and captivities.
Just this past week, as I write, after one of the hottest, most humid weeks in a while, the approach of a cold front presented the possibility of violent, destructive weather on a long weather front that stretched out across much of our fair land. It seemed that reporters, because of all that has happened so recently, were sensitized to the disastrous possibilities this could present . Their voices were full of concern and if not fear, then a definite trepidation of what they may have to convey in a short while.
In our area during the early seventies, there were a few years in a row that brought heavy snowstorms with whiteouts that came up suddenly and lasted for several days. During the first such storm the bus drivers were called in to one local school at noon . Before they could get away, the storm got too bad, so the school had not only most of their pupils, but teachers and bus drivers for two days and two nights before they could safely go home. Close neighbours, facing some danger of losing their way by even being out for a short distance, brought in food on snowmobiles, and the children slept on coats and whatever they could find to make themselves as comfortable as possible. Several other places, school buses and their loads got stranded at farm houses along the way. One farmer lost his way going from barn to house and expired in the snowdrifts not far from shelter.
The next year, the storm came unexpectedly during the morning rush hour and many were stranded in their cars along the roads. Again, there were some deaths.
As always when such things happen, there were also many stories of miracles, near tragedies and the kindness of people as they reached out to help. That has occurred again in the recent happenings in the news. That is the encouraging thing about such crises. It brings out the best in people, selfishness self-interest is laid aside in order to alleviate the need of the victims. It also makes us all aware of how quickly things can change, how dear life is and how fragile.
For years after those storms, when the weather looked in the least threatening, schools were closed and children were sent home early. But gradually, people got tired of it all and accused school authorities and bus companies of crying wolf too easily. They forgot the possibilities of tragedies and resented the disruption of regular routines.
We settle so soon into taking things for granted, going on with daily life and expecting it to go on like this forever. We forget the serious snow storms and go driving in the winter without emergency kits or even proper clothing, we forget about floods and begin building in flood plains, or forget about rock slides and drive along highways without a thought. We forget about the earth’s faults and build where earthquakes can have devastating results.
It makes me think of 2 Peter 3:4—They will say, “Where is this ‘coming’ he promised? Ever since our ancestors died, everything goes on as it has since the beginning of creation.”
And Matthew 25:5 “The bridegroom was a long time in coming, and they all became drowsy and fell asleep.”
Let’s stay alert!