Saturday, November 2, 2013

Halloween Storms Out

       The year 2013, just like the past few years features a Halloween season drenched with strong winds, heavy rains, and simply further damaging weather. Parts of the Midwest were damaged by strong winds and heavy rains ruining Halloween for many of its fans.  2012 Hurricane Sandy wrecked the Atlantic shores and beautiful beaches of New Jersey, Manhattan, and Long Island of New York. 2011Halloween nor'easter produced unusual October snowfalls in areas located in the eastern United States and maritime Canada. At least 20 cities received record snowfalls and numerous power outages making trick or treating impossible.
       The storms in 2013, just a few days ago created high winds and tornados in at least 12 states while overturning a school box, electrocuting a young child, and knocking down trees. And yet many people still look upon such many circumstances as pure coincidences and still stubbornly celebrate Halloween with what some will call "bravery" and "courage". The Bible will call such reactions stubbornness and foolhardy.
10 “The bricks have fallen down,
    but we will rebuild with dressed stone;
the fig trees have been felled,
    but we will replace them with cedars.
11 But the Lord has strengthened Rezin’s foes against them
    and has spurred their enemies on.
12 Arameans from the east and Philistines from the west
    have devoured Israel with open mouth.
Yet for all this, his anger is not turned away,
    his hand is still upraised.
13 But the people have not returned to him who struck them,
    nor have they sought the Lord Almighty.
14 So the Lord will cut off from Israel both head and tail,
    both palm branch and reed in a single day;
15 the elders and dignitaries are the head,
    the prophets who teach lies are the tail.
Isaiah 9:10-15
 
       Does the above sound familiar to you? Since hearing this verse from my pastor more than once during more than one of his sermons I have paid special attention to people's, especially leaders' comments during and after major tragedies and disasters and yes much of their comments do sound similar to what is mentioned in Isaiah 9:10-15. Much of the "we will rebuild" chatter has been made since Hurricane Sandy" yet much of the damage still remains. I don't expect the media to make a connection between the hurricanes, damaging weather and the wickedness of Halloween (“Do not allow a sorceress to live, Exodus 22:18), but Christians, those who daily study their Bibles and take God's Word seriously, they should entertain some suspicion. The deal is God knows, sees what is going on in this country, this world and even though many of us will go on through life pretending as if what we do and say does not matter and everything that happens in the present the future is all supposedly up to us, the truth is God is in charge and as He has promised there will be judgment here on earth as well as when His precious Son Jesus finally returns. Those who refuse to believe will continue to be shocked when such damaging weather patterns occur during their day of revelry. They will be confused to witness such chaotic weather while they openly disregard His Word. In return, in order to satisfy their guilty conscience, or simply out of pure ignorance, many will make up terms such as global warming in order to make sense out of something that is already so clear.
       But even with all the cover ups and the attempts to encourage people to go on with their lives: "Be Brave", "Don't Allow this Event to Change You", one who looks closely will notice that the 2013 Halloween holiday was not as loud and proud as the past ones. This letter comes from someone who has attended many Halloween parties as a child and young adult. As a child I grew up in a community where almost every child and teenager participated in trick or treating. The holiday in 2013 was quiet compared to previous years. Not as much Halloween television, specials, scary movies, toys, cartoons. Not as much churches were advertising pumpkin patch kids gatherings. News media were not boasting as much of costume gatherings as during previous years. Not as much people were dressing up in scary costumes at work, in retail stores, or in the neighborhoods. Many stories were reported about people still suffering in damages from last years horror, Hurricane Sandy. One can tell that some people were putting one and two together. One can sense some fear, some reluctance to continue with horror, business as usual.
       At times there is nothing wrong with being afraid. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, Proverbs 9:10. At times that second, third thought, may save one or one's family from God's potential future wrath. One may think twice before donning a witch's mask or behaving like an axe murderer. God is not laughing. Why try to tempt Him?