The British have a reputation for talking about the weather at every opportunity, but I guess people of every culture and country must have some interest in what the weather is doing. The topic is not only a good conversation opener.
So what can we learn from reflecting on the weather this February as we celebrate the lengthening days while nevertheless shivering in the damp and cold?
Our weather happens as it does because of vast natural laws of nature. The climate may change and human activity is almost certainly contributing to this, but the Laws of Nature don’t change as far as I know.
We believe that the Laws of Nature are part of God’s created universe and we all should be grateful for these laws because without them we wouldn’t be here! Nevertheless, every aspect of weather has both a positive and negative aspect. Pleasant summer sun can set fire to forests. The rain that nourishes our crops can turn to storms and floods.
The Psalms in the Bible are full of descriptions about the weather - the lightning and thunder, the gentle spring rain, the baking heat of midday and ‘the barren and dry land where there is no water’.
In truth, the less desirable aspects are part of the price we pay for living in our beautiful world, with its lakes and marshlands, deserts and rivers. It is the world we have from our Creator - green and pleasant sometimes, and wild and scary at others. The world is not a ‘tame’ place.
Psalm 148 says: ‘Praise the Lord from the earth…fire and hail, snow and mist, stormy wind fulfilling his word!’
It is surely in line with God’s will that we live wisely within, and respectful of, the weather and the Laws which govern it. Sadly, however, circumstances sometimes make it hard to do this and human nature may encourage foolish risk taking. It is a neat picture of life in general!
Sometimes the Laws mean we may become ill – but we take heart from the fact that medicine can use the Laws to make us better!