Severe weather can be averted
From about June 1 to November 30 the Caribbean, where I live, is usually faced with severe tropical weather systems, including torrential rainfall and hurricanes or cyclones. These weather events cause tremendous damage to or loss of property through floods and strong winds. People are displaced, livestock lost, and economies disrupted, sometimes resulting in the loss of jobs and businesses.
Every year predictions are made of the number of storms that are expected and how destructive they will be. Additionally, some Christians prophesy destruction sent by God, while others pray with the hope that God is great and can protect us from such terrors.
Recently, our tri-island state of Grenada, Carriacou, and Petite Martinique was given a tropical storm warning, which included Trinidad and Tobago to the southeast of us. Radar images suggested the path the system would take, which seemed to be over the islands. Our local meteorological office explained that it wasn’t a storm but a strong tropical wave that would bring high winds, floods, and landslides through that night and over the next two days. Much damage to property was expected.
We are a praying people, so I knew many were praying. My prayer was to know that there is only one Mind (another name for God) governing all, that it is the only Mind of each one of us, and that this divine Mind controls all systems, including weather, and all thought; therefore, we cannot fear.
I was helped by that week’s Bible Lesson from the Christian Science Quarterly on the subject “God.” It included this passage from the Christian Science textbook by Mary Baker Eddy: “The starting-point of divine Science is that God, Spirit, is All-in-all, and that there is no other might nor Mind,—that God is Love, and therefore He is divine Principle.
“To grasp the reality and order of being in its Science, you must begin by reckoning God as the divine Principle of all that really is. . . . All substance, intelligence, wisdom, being, immortality, cause, and effect belong to God. These are His attributes, the eternal manifestations of the infinite divine Principle, Love” (Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p. 275).
I insisted on keeping my thought on God alone and away from the suggestion that destructive, material forces were in control.
Understanding that our starting point is God—divine Principle; the unchanging, supreme Lawgiver; the only power and presence; divine Love—and that God’s creation reflects God and is spiritual, brings healing. In the light of divine law, neither so-called laws of nature nor human predictions and opinions can stand. And Christ Jesus did not teach that destructive storms were sent by God. He said, “I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill” (Matthew 5:17).
I also recalled the biblical account of Peter walking on the water (see Matthew 14:25–32)—that he started to sink only when he became distracted by the ferociousness of the wind and took his eyes off Jesus, whose own ability to walk on water exemplified his understanding of God as the only presence and power. So I insisted on keeping my thought on God alone and away from the suggestion that destructive, material forces were in control.
Confident that my initial declaration that divine Mind governs all systems, including weather, came from God and that His work is already done, I became calm. I went to bed and had a good night’s rest.
Comments on social media attributed the change of weather to the power of God.
The following morning, social media news reports both locally and from Trinidad and Tobago indicated that the severe weather had not materialized. “Tropical Storm Warning Discontinued” read one headline, though the article stated that we could still expect heavy rainfall in some areas. Many of the comments expressed how great God is and acknowledged God’s power. During most of that day there was sunshine. Later in the afternoon, we had only about two hours of rain, which caused flooded streets but minimal damage.
Following this event, I was reading the reminiscence of Clara Knox McKee from the book We Knew Mary Baker Eddy, Expanded Edition, Vol. 1, which describes Mrs. Eddy asking members of her household (her students) to spiritually meet and destroy evil in the form of an approaching severe weather system: “[Mrs. Eddy] asked each one to go to a window and face it, and to realize that there were no destructive elements in God’s creation. While the cyclone came whirling straight toward Pleasant View [Mrs. Eddy’s home], before it reached within a mile or so, it parted and went around Concord [New Hampshire] and into the mountains, doing very little damage in our neighborhood” (p. 465). This confirmed to me that the recent humanly unexplainable good weather was actually the natural result of divine Mind in action and that divine Mind is always operating.
In the days following this, the local meteorological office forecast more tropical waves approaching our islands, but added, “if they occur.” As it turned out, there was more sunshine than rain. A Trinidad and Tobago news network attempted to explain these sudden changes in forecast, while comments on social media attributed them to the power of God.
I give thanks to God for His goodness and constant care.