The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, or NOAA, forecasts an above average number of storms along the Atlantic Coast for this 2020 hurricane season. The hurricane season runs from June 1 through November 30, a long storm watch for vulnerable coastal residents.
Curiously, the name Noah, the biblical character who survived the great flood, and NOAA, the scientific institution, are homophones; words with the same pronunciation but with different meanings and spelling. Ironically, they share a common mission, stewardship of the earth, our fragile “island home”.
Sometimes we have fair weather faith; faith that vanishes at the first sign of trouble. As long as conditions are good then God is on our side, caring for our every need and want. But when conditions become threatening we curse the powers that beset and frighten us, be it a global pandemic, or an epic forty day and forty night torrential downpour.
A global flood as described in Genesis is inconsistent with the physical findings of scientific research. Nonetheless Noah, the man, is symbolic of God?s will for creation. God is willing for us to have dominion over the earth, a word that also means responsibility.
God has trusted us with the care of the planet. We must trust science to help us understand and improve our stewardship of the environment and its interconnected ecosystems. We must trust the word of God to inspire the courage and commitment we will need to be modern day Noahs, no matter how severe the conditions that confront us.
Thanks to NOAA’s expertise, and God?s unfailing mercy, we can prepare for those storms that do come our way, and even find peace amidst the turmoil. Not in the eye of a hurricane, but in the heart of God.