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  • July 11, 2014 - Reflections

    By Jean S. Horner
    The other day while walking down a corridor in a public building, I saw what appeared to be someone walking toward me. On coming closer, I found it was my own reflection in a huge mirror. For a moment it frightened me. Somehow a full-length reflection of one’s self is a startling thing. ...




Storm Warning

By Christina Quick
Oct. 31, 2010

"Mmmwoooooooowoooooo!"

It’s the sound of a storm siren — a warning to seek shelter.

Few things in nature are more powerful than big storms. Tornadoes and hurricanes can uproot massive trees, flatten buildings and toss around boats and cars as if they were toys. It’s a good thing there are warning systems to let people know when such storms are coming.

Years ago, our understanding of storms was limited. There were no weather radars, warnings or sirens. As a result, severe storms caused many more injuries than they do today.

We still have a lot to learn about the weather. One way to learn is by observing weather up close. Trying to get close to a severe storm is usually a bad idea. But for people trained for such work, heading into the danger zone is part of the job.

A hurricane is a storm that forms over the ocean. It is made up of a system of strong thunderstorms rotating around a calm area called an eye. Specially trained pilots fly into these storms to gather scientific data. This information helps weather experts predict how powerful a hurricane will be when it hits land.

A hurricane pilot must fly through a wall of intense storm clouds to reach the eye. The plane rocks so violently people on board sometimes get sick. Inside the calm eye, surrounded by dark clouds, the aircraft flies more smoothly.

During the flight, instruments measure things like wind speed, wind direction, temperature and air pressure. All that information helps keep people safe by allowing experts to make accurate forecasts and issue storm warnings.

Tornadoes can be harder to track down. These mighty storms form quickly and often disappear just as suddenly. People who try to see tornadoes up close are called storm chasers. Some storm chasers are trained in meteorology, the science of weather. Storm chasers use cameras and video equipment to capture images of tornadoes. These pictures can help us better understand how tornadoes form and behave.

Though people are getting better at predicting the weather, we can’t control it. Imagine how surprised you’d be if you saw someone put a stop to a storm. That’s what happened to Jesus’ friends on the Sea of Galilee. A terrible storm was about to sink their boat. Fearing they would drown, they cried out to the Lord for help. Jesus commanded the storm to stop, and it did.

“The men were amazed and asked, ‘What kind of man is this? Even the winds and the waves obey him!’” (Matthew 8:27).

Jesus’ disciples came to understand that He is God’s Son. Jesus can do anything! He has power even over the awesome forces of nature. In every situation, we can call on Him for help.

Email your comments to pe@ag.org.