When Hurricane Katrina struck the Gulf Coast of the United States the reaction of the populace varied from the scientific to the religious. The scientists said the magnitude of the hurricane could be attributed to Global Warming. Some fundamentalist theologians argued Katrina was sent by God to punish New Orleans for sinful ways.
We use anecdote, allegory, metaphor, and even simile to describe acts of God. We do so because the human race does not have language which appropriately categorizes the supernatural phenomenon of a supreme being. So we will once again try to understand nature in the context of God. This writer is certain that Governor Sarah Palin of Alaska, the Republican nominee for Vice President, would approve.
We will use an old anecdotal story for simplicity.
There was a man in New Orleans’ ninth ward during Hurricane Katrina. The people were told to evacuate. The man said, “No,” God will protect me.” The waters rose and a boat came by for assistance – the man said “No,” God will protect me.” The waters rose and the man climbed to the rooftop of his inundated home. A helicopter came by but the man again said, “No, God will protect me.” The man drowned. He went to heaven and challenged God, “I thought you were going to save me!” God replied, “I sent you three warnings, a boat and a helicopter – what did you want?”
This writer believes a religious interpretation of Hurricane Gustav is appropriate. When the human race is lined up at the gates of Heaven we will say, “God, why did you forsake us?”
God will reply, “I showed you the melting ice caps and glaciers, I sent you Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Gustav. I sent you devastating tornadoes and scorching drought and frequent Midwest floods. I gave you devices to measure greenhouse gases. You did not listen.”
Whether in theological terms or in scientific terms – we cannot say that we were not warned.