Posted in God, hail, storms

Hail’s destructive path in the Midwest

Severe storms rolled through Iowa and Nebraska yesterday. Unfortunately, more are forecast for today. I was amazed at the hail damage in Nebraska from the violent storms that rolled through. I have seen hail dent cars many times, but I’ve never seen hail puncture them!

Storms hit Midwest, ‘dangerous evening’ forecast
Homes and cars in parts of Nebraska and Iowa were pummeled Tuesday by baseball-sized hail and damaging winds as potentially dangerous storms targeted a swath of the Midwest, including the Omaha area, where flooding left dozens of drivers stranded and prompted home evacuations. The National Weather Service said reports of extensive hail damage and flooding had trickled in as storms pushed into Nebraska and moved into neighboring Iowa, where winds of up to 85 mph were recorded. Up to 4 inches of rain was expected in parts of Nebraska and Iowa.

Weather Center Live meteorologist Shawn Reynolds tweeted yesterday at the height of the storms: “It’s the day from #hail: More than 130 storm reports of hail today

Thunderstorms leave wake of destruction in Council Bluffs, southwest Iowa

@nonpareilonline: A floating car in #CouncilBluffs (Iowa
sent in by @melaniexyz & others

In Blair Nebraska, there were injuries from hail at
Walmart parking lot, 12 taken to hospital, conditions unknown.

Above photo was tweeted on Shawn Reynolds’ stream,: “RT @AdamPeters: Hail damage in Blair, NE via @Michaeldkrueger’s cousin #newx

In Treynor Iowa, hail damages a house

Above photo tweeted from Shawn Reynolds’ stream: “This is just nuts RT @KWWLSchnack: Hail damage in #Treynor from storms Tuesday afternoon. #iawx

driftwood1963 Instagram, “Wickedness falling from the sky!
#iowa #storms #crazy #wicked #hail #thunderstorms”

Here is a collage of damage from yesterday’s weather put together by The Weather Channel

I’m not a weather expert by any means but it seems to me that though we had a few years of rising tornadoes and worse damage from them, that this year tornadoes haven’t been the bid bad mama of weather. There are fewer tornadoes, while hail storms seems to be the weather destroyer in 2014. Here is a graph that seems to confirm that there are fewer tornadoes this year: (thank goodness!)

You notice that unusually, there were no tornadoes in January or February. It is a fact that 2014 is the slowest start to tornado season ever, and gratefully, no fatalities.

I searched insurance websites to see what the claims from weather damage have been for the last few years.

The Rocky Mountain Independent Insurance Agents bulletin reported that “The nation has experienced severe storms (wind, tornado, hail) that are occurring with more intensity and affecting more areas of the country. While scientists debate why these storms occur, no one argues with their effects—extensive property damage and, many times, loss of life.

Fast Fact: National Hail Statistics: Damage caused by wind and hail cost State Farm and its policyholders more than $3.9 billion in 2012, according to an April 2013 analysis by the insurer. Texas was the state with the most wind/hail losses, followed by Illinois, New York, Ohio, Missouri, Tennessee, Indiana, New Jersey, Kentucky and Colorado. (source)

The National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) reports that “Hail Damage Claims in the United States, between 2010-2012, more Frequent, Severe Storms Drive 84 Percent Claims Increase.” In Montana, it is reported that the year 2013 was a record-setter for hail damage.

Here is some information from the National Weather Service regarding hail safety tips:

“Imagine a baseball dropped from an airplane flying at 30,000 feet … imagine that baseball reaching speeds of 120 MPH as it falls to the ground … and imagine you’re under it! Imagine you’re driving along at 70 MPH…or your crops are under the hail producing thunderstorm…or your home is under the thunderstorm… Hail causes $1 billion dollars in damage to crops and property each year.”

The article discusses how hail forms, how to size hail, why some hailstones are irregularly formed, the largest hailstone ever recorded in the US, and more.

Whenever I read of a hail storm I can’t help but think of the 100 pound hail that will pound men during the Tribulation. Revelation 16:21 says

“And great hailstones, about one hundred pounds each, fell from heaven on people; and they cursed God for the plague of the hail, because the plague was so severe.”

One hundred pound hailstones are not normal. It is not natural. The Weather Underground reports that “The largest officially recognized hailstone on record to have been ‘captured’ in the U.S. was that which fell near Vivian, South Dakota last summer (2010) on July 23rd. It measured 8.0” in diameter, 18 ½” in circumference, and weighed in at 1.9375 pounds.”

So when the 100 lb hailstones fall men will know that it is God, because such large hailstones have never fallen in the world to date. These hailstones will be larger by a factor of ten.

Give glory to the God in heaven now, for His restraining hand, for His blanket of mercy and common grace He delivers to the Godly and the ungodly every day. We have air to breathe, a creation to live upon, blessed rain in season, food to eat. We have the knowledge of the Gospel and for those who don’t, the opportunity to share it. His grace and mercies are manifold. There is much to praise.

When the large hail falls upon the city during the Tribulation, and men curse God, it shows us just how depraved we are. When faced with irrefutable proof of His existence, in creating such large plagues of hailstones, man in his pride still will not bow down.

Bow now to the Comforter, the Prince of Peace, the Loving Son, and Great Shepherd. Or you will bow later, Romans 14:11 says. Excerpt then, you would bow before God as His enemy. Bow now in grace as His friend. It is a terrible thing to fall into the hands of the Living God.

For we know Him who said, “VENGEANCE IS MINE, I WILL REPAY.” And again, “THE LORD WILL JUDGE HIS PEOPLE.” 31It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God. (Hebrews 10:30-31)

Posted in bird flu, prophecy, storms

Random thoughts on a hot day, plus some news

A while ago someone kindly sent me a link to a website that keeps track of landslides. If you follow this blog for very long, you know that I often state that Jesus graciously answered the disciples’ questions in Matthew 24:3 “Tell us, when will these things be? And what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?” by presenting a lengthy answer in the rest of Matthew 24.

In His answer, and also in many, many other New and Old Testament verses, geo-physical storms and changes are part of His warnings that the end will be near. Weather, earthquakes, volcanoes, celestial signs, etc. all indicate the end of the age. Though those things have always occurred since the Fall of man in Genesis 3, His constant use of the metaphor that the signs will be as birthpangs tells us that the majority of noticeable warning signs (and then actual judgments) will crowd the latter part of the Church age.

So being interested in end time warning signs, to see if the things happening are indeed unusual in number or type, I have a lot of bookmarks that immediately lead me to information about current news of meteor sightings, volcano eruptions, earthquake activity and the like. So I placed the landslide bookmark within that list…and then forgot about it.

Until a few days ago. I clicked on it…and was immediately struck by the number of rain-driven landslides and the disruptions they are causing. Wow! The first story on the top of the list was from June 30 and the opening lede goes like this:

“Yesterday more details emerged of the landslide incident on the West Highland line in Scotland that derailed a freight train. The incident came during the exceptional rainfall associated with thunderstorms that passed across northern Britain – a final hurrah for the wettest second quarter of the year on record in the UK.”

Source Daily Mail

That is news I didn’t know. Then today comes this news from the UK Telegraph:

“Flood warning: UK faces a month’s worth of rain today. Today is forecast to be the wettest day of the summer so far with the UK facing a month’s worth of rain in 24 hours, bringing a severe risk of flooding and chaos.”

Flooding and chaos…chaos seems increasingly to be a component of weather forecasts these days, doesn’t it?

Here is some other news for you today.

Another small earthquake shakes Johnson County (TX)
“Yet another minor earthquake shook Johnson County overnight. The 2.7-magnitude quake struck shortly before 3:30 a.m. between Cleburne and Alvarado, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. No injuries or significant damage was reported. Generally, it’s tough to feel anything below magnitude 3. It was the fourth temblor in three weeks in the county and the latest in dozens in that area.”

I saw that there was a small one in GA a few days ago too! In Deepstep, GA 66 miles from where I live, a magnitude 2.7 at 9:51 PM EDT on July 3. As a matter of fact, a few days ago, not July 3 but before that, I was sitting quietly at my table, reading the bible. The bookcase next to my table began to shake and the coaster skittered, making a jiggle on its notepad. A truck was not going by and a train was not going by and I do not live near a quarry and no one was using an auger or drill.  “Hmmm, this is an earth tremor,” I thought. I discovered that about 50 miles away, a temblor had occurred at only 1.7 mile depth. Perhaps that was what I had felt. Though earthquakes happen in Georgia USA, I had never felt one. Now, perhaps, I have.

The Washington DC heat is the worst-ever heat wave for them. Well, SOMEONE has to turn up the heat on those politicians, I guess!

There is a mysterious disease that is killing children in Cambodia. I’ve been reading about it for a few days now. The issue with this disease is the high mortality rate. Only 2 of the 64 children who contracted the disease have survived. CNN has more.

An 8-year-old girl died of bird flu in Indonesia. Did anyone notice Drudge’s hat-tip to threes in one day? Three children drown in river, three children die in capsized boat, three children electrocuted while swimming. All threes, all kids, all water based deaths.

Anyway, I read stuff like that and worse, in just the headlines, even, and I pray more fervently for the rapture so the children will be safe at last. Those in the womb, the neglected, the abused, the molested, the hungry, the enslaved…all safe!!!!

There have been fish kills in Georgia USA, South Dakota, South Carolina, Dexter MO, Delaware, etc. but in this case, unlike the fish die-offs in 2011 and 2012, the experts say that the excessive and successive heat has sucked the oxygen out of the water and the high temps are just too much for the fish. Which makes sense.

I hope you’re staying cool today. I am, but it is a struggle. I went out to the Dollar Store for my weekly stocking up , this time choosing the store location a mile from me instead of 7 miles, because I wasn’t also going grocery shopping at the same time. Even with that minor trip, which included the bank, veggie stand, and the Post Office, when I came home I was hot, cranky, sweaty, and hot. Did I say I was hot?

Ahhh, but the mercies of Jesus continue. He gave me my daily manna, and I have food and fresh fruit & veggies, a comfortable home, and pleasant days in which to study His word. Here is a great essay from Jesse Johnson. He is a DC pastor, who was affected by the terrible storms that occurred the other day in our nation’s capital. He compares the inconveniences of that storm to the one that is coming that will be far, far greater. “Storms come and Storms Go“. May it bless you and may we all have perspective in these perilous times that we dwell in His hand and He is in control.

Posted in heat wave, judgment, prophecy, storms

(Updated 2X) Have you forgotten about Debby already? Fires, Derechos and heat make Debby seem like old news

Update #2: In an ironic twist to the fulfillment of what I said below regarding media’s use of ever-topping superlatives to try and explain the outsized events occurring almost daily now, the derechos that occurred yesterday and reported on this morning, are by this afternoon called SUPER-derecho. From Accuweather: “Deadly Super Derecho Strikes Midwest, Mid-Atlantic


UPDATE #1 from the Weather Channel summarizing last night’s storms:

We are awakening to reports of some severe weather here in the eastern US overnight.
“As storm reports continue to come in from the severe storms, meteorologists say the storm reports from this event are the 2nd highest reported in a single day in 2012. Millions are without power and travel has been impacted. AMTRAK service has been suspended from Washington D.C. to Philadelphia and Washington D.C to Baltimore due to downed trees and signal power. At least two have died from storm related injuries as of early Saturday morning.”

Original post:

Meteorologist Heather Brinkmann wrote, “Check out this radar composite of the derecho that went thru the Ohio Valley today”

NOAA defines derecho as “a widespread, long-lived wind storm that is associated with a band of rapidly moving showers or thunderstorms. Although a derecho can produce destruction similar to that of tornadoes, the damage typically is directed in one direction along a relatively straight swath.”

This is what a derecho looks like in real life:


Source NOAA

Definitely a scary looking storm.

Although derechos are not unheard of, they are not an everyday occurrence, either. See this frequency map from NOAA. Yesterday’s derecho occurred in exactly the place they most likely occur, “along the “Corn Belt” from the upper Mississippi Valley southeast into the Ohio Valley, and the other from the southern Plains northeast into the mid Mississippi Valley.”

Source NOAA

Yesterday’s storms were damaging, especially to the people in Washington DC. This morning millions are without power, and in some cases, it will take multiple days to get them hooked up again. This is bad news, because the extreme heat is supposed to continue. Today’s temps are predicted to be triple digit again. A dangerous situation for sure.

The weather has continually been outsized. I often talk about the language newscasters and meterologists use to describe what they are seeing. Increasingly since 2009 they use superlatives such as “greatest,” “biggest”, “most damaging”. But even those top superlatives don’t describe what is happening any more. The events keep topping themselves. They now say “Apocalyptic,” “epic”, “biblical,” and “record breaking” or “historic.”

The power of words diminishes the more you use one, and the term ‘record-breaking’, after a while doesn’t mean much if records are being broken every day. And they are. Even the Guardian UK asked what is going on:

America in grip of fire and floods
“Natural disasters are wreaking havoc across the US, with the entire state of Florida on emergency flood watch – while, in Colorado, half of the country’s entire firefighting force is battling massive blazes that have displaced thousands.”

Floods? What floods? Tropical Storm Debby. Oh yes, that’s right. Forgotten in the face of the Colorado wildfires, and then immediately after that, the extreme heat and then the derechos. Four disasters in one week, and the brain tries to maintain a sense of perspective, but it can’t. Something has to give. Debby’s devastating flooding is now relegated to the dustbin of old news, even though it happened just 5 days ago.

I wonder how quickly the plagues of Egypt happened, how long in between them they occurred. Maybe the first few started slowly but by the time the 7th, 8th, 9th plagues came they were overlapping.

Though these are not eschatalogical (end times) judgments per se, like the biblical plagues were, they seem pretty bad as it is. In reading newspaper articles about them, people often refer to the bible. Here is a quote from the Guardian article:

“Local Amanda Rice said: “It was just this God-awful orange glow. It was surreal. It honestly looked like hell was opening up.”

This is from the Colorado Springs Gazette:

WALDO CANYON FIRE: Hell in the rearview mirror

“And there I sat in traffic. It’s a memory I’ll never forget. I teared up as I scanned the surrounding cars. Everywhere were children, scared and crying, their parents looking deathly afraid and, in my rearview mirror, a view of the gates of hell.”

I want you to think about the heat wave. Here in North GA we had actual temps of 111 yesterday, though the predictions were for 105. Today the predictions are for 109 but I wonder how high the actual temps will be. They are saying that heat indexes (real feel) will be over 114. Yet it will get worse.

During the tribulation, one of the bowl judgments will be to heat up the earth so that people are literally scorched. “The fourth angel poured out his bowl on the sun, and it was allowed to scorch people with fire. They were scorched by the fierce heat, and they cursed the name of God who had power over these plagues. They did not repent and give him glory.” (Revelation 16:8-9).

Bu that time they know and understand that it is God making the crazy weather, not “mother Nature” or “global warning”, because the verse says they curse Him. I wonder if it will be that He makes it so hot that asphalt and wood spontaneously combust…or if solar flares actually singe the earth itself…I don’t know. But you can imagine the havoc in DC this morning with no electricity yet all this heat. People are going to die today if they can’t get cool, it is just a fact. The elderly and the infants and sick will succumb in hot apartments where no air stirs and they can’t seem to catch a breath. And yet the bible shows us how much worse it will get.

One thing is better. All this crazy weather activity seems to be making people whose hearts are not closed to Him think of Him. Twitter is the current iteration of vox populi, a Latin term literally meaning ‘voice of the people.’ Broadcasters use it, a man on the street kind of thing. What are the people saying? Well, this morning I woke up to find on the trending list, “Zechariah 14:9.” I can’t tell you how rare it is for biblical things to be trending. That means enough people have to be talking about a certain thing over all the world’s twitter users, to make the subject one of the top ten of all the things that vox populi could be talking about. Almost always the trends list  is stuffed with celebrity news, sports, and meaningless jokes.

Zechariah 14:9 says:

“And the LORD will be king over all the earth. On that day the LORD will be one and his name one.”

The saints know Jesus is coming soon. We are excited to see what He is doing in the world. Not that people are in pain, obviously, but that His name is on the lips of many, His glory and power are noticed, and that His word is repeated online between and among believers and non-believers alike. This ‘crazy weather’ isn’t crazy. It is a controlled series of events from the Creator of weather, the Creator of the earth and all that is in it. He is telling us something. How many warnings will there be? Not many more, I fear. He has been patient with us, kind and generous. That period of warning will end and after the rapture, the judgments will begin.

I pray you are among the blessed who have already made Jesus your Lord and King. Repentance is the key. Repenting of your sins and appealing to the One Sacrifice who has the ability to forgive them is the way to heaven. The only way. For as the verse in Zechariah says, the LORD will be King over all the earth. Will you face Him as friend, or enemy? Repentence is the key.