I was talking to someone today from upstate New York and discovered he grew up in an area that I traveled through many times on my way to New England. We both reminisced about the beauty of the river, mountains, and landscape of the upper Hudson River valley. Our conclusion was that our God is an amazing Creator! He made the world as a type of “billboard,” clearly advertising His wisdom, knowledge, and power. But some would ask, “If God created nature, why does nature sometimes spin out of control—even killing people?” As I am writing this, I am wondering about the path of hurricane Irma. We just finished experiencing the wrath of hurricane Harvey, and now another one! Why does creation seem to be our enemy at times instead of our friend? In the Book of Romans, the Holy Spirit reveals the devastating effects of sin for the whole world. Sin not only affects (and infects) the whole human race (“All have sinned,” Romans 3:23), but it also powerfully impacts creation itself. Paul wrote, “We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time” (Romans 8:22). Even the natural world experiences the effects of sin, and waits for the day of complete freedom when the Lord Jesus will judge all sin and make all things new. “But in keeping with His promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, the home of righteousness” (2 Peter 3:13). The “baby” is on the way, but there are pains first! In God’s glorious future, you can be sure there will be no “natural disasters.” Until that time, we patiently wait on the Lord and persevere during times of trouble. As believers in Jesus, we are not exempt from the difficulties of earthly trials. In fact, through them, we get to show the world how we overcome with Jesus and how we help others who suffer.
Pastor Mark Boucher