We've been concerned all yesterday and last night for our friends, former neighbors, former co-workers, and members of our former church in central Alabama. All kinds of storm warnings, tornado watches, everything. We saw yesterday that there are at least four dead in Mississippi from that same storm system, tornadoes and powerful winds and rain. Have not yet had good reliable information this morning. But when I saw that one of my former co-workers posting on social media from a shelter near Auburn / Opelika, I knew it was BAD.
Expect to be off to church services this morning, shortly. Weather here has been unusually nice, unusually warm for this area at this time of year. I am not complaining, trust me: I regard snow and cold as being evil and hate the thought of it, and the reality even more so. I've lived through days and days in which the "high" barely got above the zero mark, and sometimes not even that. Being well above the freezing point, even at night, is just fine by me. No complaints, no none at all. But I'm not running a ski resort or a snow plowing business. They probably are not in agreement.
The screams and wails over the beginning of the Trump presidency continue, largely unabated. I am determinedly remaining mostly quiet. I have friends and close family on both sides of the divide. The matter is in place, the time for electioneering is past. But some certainly do not see it that way. I'd hoped for a time of calm, but that does not seem to be happening.
The Old Testament reading today is chapters 1, 2, and 3 of the Exodus.
This is, of courses, a big change in direction. The earth has been created. The Fall and the Flood have taken place. Cities and empires have arisen. Arguably the most powerful one of those empires is Egypt. The pharaohs rule. And the descendants of the patriarchs, the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, are living in Egypt, now as slaves in an empire whose ruler's merest whim is law. They have been living in Egypt now for some 400 years. Jacob is dead long since, so is Joseph. And any residual regard that the pharaohs had for Joseph and his family is long gone. And now the time has come to leave. Not easy for slaves. So the Lord has a plan, and picks -- again -- a most unlikely means. Beginning with a baby, who somehow ends up in Pharaoh's household, fostered by Pharaoh's own daughter. An unlikely tool for the Lord's plan. Funny how that happens.
The reading in the New Testament is verses 21-39 from the 15th chapter in the Gospel of Matthew. Jesus is, once again, doing all sorts of things that the "respectable, prudent" leaders of the day found intolerable. And impossible. Except that He did them. Still does, at that.