Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Fire, Wind and Rain

Our beautiful island of Maui has experienced its share of natural phenomena this last week. A fire broke out on the slopes of Haleakala Mountain at Polipoli Park and burned for four solid days before it was finally contained. There was about 1200 acres destroyed by the uncontrollable fire. We could smell the smoke from the fire at our house as the wind blew it in our direction. We could see the flames from our back porch in the dark night hours. Our hearts were sad as that area was a favorite hiking place of our family. Now it will take years to replenish the burned out trees that were destroyed and bring the area back to the place it was before the fire.

If that were not enough, two days ago came very strong winds from a northern weather pattern that has brought winds ranging from 20 to 50 miles per hour to all the islands of Hawaii. At our house, we are surrounded by large trees and for two days an amazing amount of branches and shredded leaves have fallen to the ground. Our banana patch has lost several trees, along with several bunches of bananas that came tumbling to the ground. Our lychee tree was so lush and full with leaves prior to the wind and is now very sparse having lost several large branches and tons of leaves. Our avocado tree has lost every blossom, as has the very large mango tree of our neighbors that spread its branches over into our property. The small flowers and herbs in my garden are dangling their pretty heads to the ground and look very wind beaten. The winds are continuing to buffet us and are not expected to dwindle until sometime tomorrow. The sound is disconcerting and leaves me a little on the edge!

Tomorrow in the forecast we are to receive two days of heavy rain. The island actually could use a little rain as things are getting pretty brown, but heavy rains could cause some damage in the higher elevations of the island, especially in Hana.

As I contemplated all the weather-related annoyances of this past week, I was encouraged as I looked out our front window this afternoon and saw a rainbow, very wide and bright. The rainbow reminded me of God's promise that there would never be another flood that would destroy the earth. A rainbow always seems to bring a sense of hope that all is well. It reminds me that all the power we have experienced through the fire, wind and probably the rain that is coming is all under God's sovereign control. He is the Master of the wind, rain and fire, and they obey His bidding. So when I feel nervous or on edge by the sound of the wind or the rain, I will remind myself that God who loves me is in control!

A little prayer wouldn't hurt either---so pray for us!


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