Hurricanes, volcanoes & God

 

beard-beggar-face-35015

It is difficult to feel joy and happiness while millions of my neighbors to the north are still reeling from the devastation of a Category 4 hurricane.  It will take months, if not years, for them to rebuild their lives.

I believe that what the rest of us Floridians are feeling is relief.  We dodged this one, but the next could get us.  It’s what we live with here on the Gulf as do our friends on the Atlantic coast during the hot, summer months when superheated waters spawn super storms.  I try to never say I’m glad that the hurricane missed us and made landfall in another community.  I try never to believe that God saved us from the devastation because then the follow-up question would be, “Why didn’t God save them also? Don’t we have a loving and just Father who tends all his people?”

Naw, don’t need to go there.  I’d rather live with the mysteries of my simplistic God-belief than the theories of scholarly minds and PHDs in Divinity.  The bottom line for all of us is that nobody knows.  We all get a one way ticket to eternity and nobody has come back to explain the God mysteries to us.  The theses and scholarly papers written throughout history are nothing more than man’s philosophy.  The scriptures accepted by many as the inerrant and infallible word of God are beautiful literature written by men and women highly inspired by their faith in what they hope is truth.  But, nobody knows.

And therefore, why was my coastline spared while the Panhandle got blasted?  Do you think that maybe God had nothing to do with it?  The reason I’m hot about this tonight is because a neighbor commented, “Well, God surely protected us from the wrath of Michael.”  Really?  She also believes that Sodom and Gomorrah got incinerated because of their sins.  Folks, active volcanoes, not God, do that kind of thing.  Volcanoes spew fire and ash into the air and destroy villages and cities.  If we need to credit anyone let’s give Mother Nature a hand for being the weather-master of our planet.  She creates and destroys.

Rejoice and be glad

smiley 3

Somedays my feminine side takes over and I have a pressing need to rearrange the furniture or, as happened today, rearrange my blog site.  WordPress makes it very simple to change a format and present a new look.

Deep within the category of “pages” which don’t get much attention was something I had created several years ago – a collection of verses which urge us to rejoice and a beautiful, African-American spiritual rendition titled ‘I Will Rejoice’.  Click on the link above in the pages menu.

Do we have much over which to rejoice in today’s society?  Our people are severely divided by politics and issues of social injustice.  Income inequity finds the most vulnerable of the poor living in conditions of poverty and hunger.  Homelessness has become a national disgrace within a country of unfathomable, immense wealth.

Did I create a gratitude list this morning when I arose?  Hurricane Michael spared my part of Florida but other folks further north got nailed.  Is that something for which to be grateful?  They suffered great losses while I sit here tonight, house intact and dry, typing out a post on WordPress.  Where’s the justice?

“This is the day which the Lord has made;  we will rejoice and be glad in it.”  Psalms 118:24

That verse doesn’t put a qualifier or conditions on my rejoicing, does it?  Whatever befalls me, I will rejoice.  Whatever happens to my material possessions, I will rejoice.  Whatever personal discomfort I face, I will rejoice.

Why?  Because my Lord has made this day for me to go forth living boldly and faithfully in His goodness and mercy.  No time for despairing over physical ailments or financial losses.  No room for pity parties to which I am the only one invited.  When was the last time anyone other than you showed up at your pity party?

Today is my Lord’s day made especially for me.  I will rejoice and be glad.
Picture40