If we knew that there was a hurricane on its way to our city, and there would be great flooding, what would we do? I grew up in a city called Gloucester, Virginia which is on a peninsula of eastern Virginia, so I know about hurricanes. Every hurricane season our family would turn on the local news and hear about what tropical depressions and tropical storms were churning out at sea and watch them closely. Almost every year there were a few who became full-blown hurricanes, but many of them slowed down when they hit the Outer Banks in North Carolina so there was not much damage or flooding.
But every now and again there would be one that hit us hard and many people were unprepared for the storm. I remember very vividly when I was 15, Hurricane Isabel rocked out little town and many people were evacuated from their homes, losing many appliances, belongings, and some even pets. There are a few things from these storms that I consider now which have application to our lives.
THE VALUE OF PREPARATION
When you know there is going to be a great storm coming, proper preparation is vital. Having sufficient food, water, transportation, fuel, and a place to retreat is absolutely essential. Similarly, Christians are warned in scripture that there is a day coming that will be unlike any other day before it. 2 Peter 3:10, “But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up.” Also the value of preparation is taught by Jesus in Luke 12:47, “And that servant who knew his master's will, and did not prepare himself or do according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes.” We ought to then prepare ourselves for the judgment day far more than for a simple storm.
When a storm hits, there are many who leave their homes for higher ground. This, unfortunately, leaves an opportunity for others to break in and loot. In my county, it was not very common since almost everyone was a waterman or hunter so the danger to looters was not the flood waters, but buckshot. Nevertheless, there are instances where the worst in people arises and we see how heartless men can be. This is just a reflection of the freedom of choice we all have. God was not willing to let us be controlled by Him directly. He wanted us to choose to obey Him. In situations like these, it’s simply a reminder that in God allowing us a choice, sometimes mankind will choose evil over good.
Not only do bad things happen sometimes, but remarkably good things as well. Some choose to loot, while others seek to risk their own lives to rescue those who were trapped. Others were kind in offering of their own supplies of food, water, and shelter to those who lost everything. There were law enforcement officers who stayed to assist, EMS workers who saved lives, linemen who still went out to try and restore power, and the list goes on. Sometimes in situations we see the worst in humanity, but more often we see the best mankind has to offer.
Let us be reminded that situations arise which are dangerous, but more importantly we will all face “an appointed day” in which we need to be prepared. May God bless us as we get ready to meet Him.