Heat Wave!

July 22, 2021
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Listen while you read: "The Church's One Foundation"1 (Lyrics)

What a stunning reversal in normal summer weather patterns took place in late June, 2021! Rather than shivering and trying to keep dry on a typical camping trip, everyone in the USA Pacific Northwest was desperately trying to cope with the record-shattering 116°F (46°C) temperature. Even worse was the 121.3°F (49.6°C) Canadian temperature record set in Lytton, a small town in British Columbia, which was later sadly destroyed by a wildfire.

All of nature suffered because of this unprecedented weather. Despite my best attempts to keep them well-watered and protected from the blazing sun, shrubs on my patio ended up with patches of burned leaves, dry and crispy as potato chips. Shade-loving plants died. In most cases, there was absolutely nothing that we could do to avert the consequences of this baking heat.

I recently happened upon an interesting definition pertaining to this sort of natural phenomenon. Inspired by the highly improbable possibility of seeing a black swan among a group of white swans, a Black Swan event is seen as an unpredictable event that is beyond what is normally expected of a situation and has potentially severe consequences. Black Swan events are characterized by their extreme rarity, severe impact, and the widespread insistence that they were obvious in hindsight.

There are some parallels here to life in general, and particularly to our Christian walk. We can go through life doing the best that we can to act wisely in order to avoid trouble. Despite everything, nonetheless, trouble comes into our lives. We may face financial reversals, consequences of poor decisions, serious health problems, and heartaches caused by other people or by circumstances beyond our control. Sometimes, in hindsight, we think that we could have averted the trouble had we acted differently, but many times, bad things simply happen.

We know that unbelievers benefit from the loving hand of God right along with His beloved children. Matthew 5:45b tells us that "He, after all, loves each of us — good and evil, kind and cruel. He causes the sun to rise and shine on evil and good alike. He causes the rain to water the fields of the righteous and the fields of the sinner." (The Voice)

The reverse is also true. Bad things also happen to good people. The difference is that God promises His children unfailing strength to bear troubling events.

1 Corinthians 10:13 – The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure. (NLT)

Point to ponder: Let us place our lives lock, stock, and barrel into the hands of an all-knowing God, trusting Him to carry us through the storms of life.

Prayer: Dear Father, we are thankful for Your promise to care for us, no matter what. May we be grateful for Your blessings, but also have faith and trust to hold onto Your promises when hard times come our way. Amen.

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About the author:

Gail Lundquist <gail10833@gmail.com>
Beaverton, Oregon, USA

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Thanks for the comforting words, Gail.


    Amen! Thanks, Gail, for that strengthening message.
    (BC)


    I liked your verses and thoughts today. I am a retired pastor.
    (Iowa)


    Amen, my friend! This past couple of years have truly tested our trust and faith! Thanks
    for sharing. Blessings.


    Thanks, Gail, for your wise and encouraging words today. Praise God for His faithfulness in all circumstances. Blessings.


    Very helpful.
    Thanks Gail.
    Blessings.


    I needed that this morning….what a super message. Thank you, Gail, for helping me let the good Lord help me.
    With thankfulness
    (Ontario)


    Good morning Gail,
    Thank you for a very good devotional again this morning. It is always a good idea to put everything in God’s hand and He will hold ours.
    Blessings.


    Hi Gail,
    I’d never heard the term “black swan event”. Those wildfires and high temperatures have affected us as well. Currently we have a smoky pall in our city from our neighbours’ fires. It’s good to know that God is ultimately in control.


    Gail.
    Your devotional certainly was timely and appropriate for the weather. God is so gracious to be with us in our every need. I thought of you and the Canadians during your hot spell. In northern California, it was 110, but nothing compared to you folks. Blessings to you.


    Hi Gail,
    AND, in Texas we are having lower than normal temperatures and an unbelievable amount of rain. HOWEVER, it looks like we are heading for a typical hot Texas August. Hopefully, Portland and surrounding areas will cool down.
    As always, your thoughts in the devotional are appreciated.


    Hello Gail
    Amazing the climates in the different places!! We just had 30 some days with no rain but thank God He sent some the other evening and a day or two also.
    I was just saying the same thing to a friend, that we still have things happen to us as Christians, but we do not go through it alone, big difference.
    Thank you for this and sorry to hear about your plants!!
    God bless.
    (Azores)


    Hello Gail,
    Thank you for another of your deeply meaningful devotionals. Yes, this summer is a real experience of changing weather conditions. Like you in Oregon, we in B.C. are experiencing various extremes on a daily basis. Through it all our strength comes from our faith and trust in our loving Lord who is ever with us and listening to our prayers. He will guide us through these situations in the best way and in His timing for which He is all deserving of our gratitude. Blessings for your special and very encouraging writings.


    Good morning Gail,
    I enjoyed this devotional and did wonder how you would conclude your thoughts. It is so true that we think we can control our lives at times and it is not possible. God is in control which is so difficult to remember even when we truly believe this.
    This passage “The reverse is also true. Bad things also happen to good people. The difference is that God promises His children unfailing strength to bear troubling events.” It is so hard to wrap our heads around. I forget that God didn’t promise me a rose garden even if I try so hard to be a good Christian. He promised to be there to comfort and love me and that I will endure whatever comes my way. There are so many examples of this in the Bible but for some reason it is hard to grasp at times.
    Thank you for sharing your thoughts on such an unusual happening. This week all over the world there have been so many disastrous events, it does make you think. May you continue to share and may you continue to be blessed.

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