By now most of you probably are aware of the earthquake that struck central Florida on Sunday. If you're not, don't feel bad. It came as a surprise to everybody here also. It also was felt in Louisiana and other places in the Gulf of Mexico.
Quoting from the Orlando Sentinel, "The U.S. Geological Survey, which monitors seismic activity, recorded the earthquake at 10:56 a.m., about 260 miles southwest of Tampa. It reached magnitude 6, the strongest and most widely felt of only about a dozen temblors that have been recorded in the Gulf in 30 years.... Before Sunday's earthquake, the most recent quake in the Gulf was February 10 and was a magnitude 5.2, USGS data show. That another one followed seven months later puzzled scientists even more."
I, for one, did not feel the quake but it seems that thousands of others did. Many thought it was a terrorist attack and called 911; others thought it was a sinkhole. I grew up around Los Angeles and am quite used to earthquakes. However, having in the same place together with hurricanes, tornadoes, and lightning strikes is not that appealing.
The earth seems to be getting pretty active around this area of the globe. We had the severe hurricanes the last two years — and many are predicted for years to come, and now earthquakes. Central Florida is also the lightning capital of the United States, and only second in the world to central Africa. Just recently we had the worst lightning storm I have seen in the 17 years that I have lived in this area. It burned a bush in our front yard and destroyed a television set, a cable modem, and a network router. The couple that I play music with lives on the street behind us. They had a concrete pole in their front yard struck, chipping away the concrete. It also destroyed one of their television sets, a speaker used in studio recording, it burned one of their tables (from the electric cord), burned out their overhead garage door opener, and set off their alarm system. Others around the area also experienced severe damage from the lightning storm.
So what's the significance of all this? Isaiah speaks of the downward spiral of sin and its effect on the earth:
"The earth is also polluted by its inhabitants, for they transgressed laws, violated statutes, broke the everlasting covenant. Therefore, a curse devours the earth, and those who live in it are held guilty. Therefore, the inhabitants of the earth are burned, and few men are left.... The earth reels to and fro like a drunkard and it totters like a shack, for its transgression is heavy upon it, and it will fall, never to rise again." Isaiah 24:5-6,20
It would seem that sin has a spiritual weight to it. We speak of sin as being a burden, and so it seems to be to God's creation also. As time goes by man's sin increases and, therefore, its weight upon the earth and its elements. We can say that our sin of greed has caused the greenhouse effect upon the earth, as well as other disasters. In addition, they also add their spiritual weight. There are, of course, many other sins that weigh upon the earth.
We need to be alert of what is happening. Don't get bogged down with day-to-day things. Keep focused on the Kingdom of God. Keep your mind open to Scripture. Many times someone teaches something on prophecy and states that it will happen a certain way but when it does happen, we miss it because it didn't look like what we were expecting. Keep your mind open to what the Lord is doing and search the Scriptures.
"Behold, the Lord has proclaimed to the end of the earth, 'Say to the daughter of Zion, "Lo, your salvation comes; Behold His reward is with Him, and His recompense before Him."'" Isaiah 62:11