For everything there is a season,
a time for every activity under heaven. – Ecclesiastes 3
It’s Friday morning in beautiful Wake Forest. Sunshine, clear air, cool with the promise of fall. When I walked Scoutie it was just 54-degrees. Rebekah and I had coffee and morning devotions on the deck, then she headed into work to get ready for tomorrow’s church officer retreat.
It’s hard to imagine the absolute turmoil and mayhem that currently advancing, west-northwest at 16 miles per hour.
Living in Florida thirty-five years (DeLand 4, Pensacola more than 14, then almost 17 in Tampa), I remember literally dozens of hurricanes, including some remarkably impressive storms. Other than the morning we woke up to find Opal had set sights on Pensacola as a cat 4, expected to make landfall as a cat 5, I was never any more than mildly nervous (Opal veered east at the last minute and went in at Navarre, slicing the island into several sections).
But Irma is not only massive but ominous. I’m extremely anxious for the well being of the state that means so much to me and the people of Central Florida we love so much.
I know there are better and more current maps of the system available, but I took a screenshot of this one (above) yesterday because it illustrates the hard to grasp fact of three simultaneous hurricanes – two major with a capital M.
Meanwhile, up in Richmond, my grandchildren are evidently working hard to perfect the art of cuteness. Beks is so proud of her big brother, and so excited that he’s going to school.
Our daughter Naomi is doing a great job of documenting the first week: “Day four,” she writes under another photo. “David is still not embarrassed to blow me a kiss and yell out “I love you!” in front of his peers. 🎉🎉🎉”
If there is one thing you can count on from small children it’s a healthy dose of perspective. Yes, the world is broken in many ways – not only natural disasters but widespread war, hatred, and calloused inhumanity. Yes, we see suffering and turmoil and disappointment and wrong gone amok. But then children are born, children who can be taught goodness, and kindness, and mercy, and grace, and love, and raised in the ways of peace.
I see my grandchildren and I have hope. I believe, Lord help our unbelief.
Finally, here are a couple of foodie photos so you know I haven’t given up on our commitment to a healthy, balanced diet.
Once again, it is new and creative approaches to managing Type-1 Diabetes that are driving great food decisions. There may be a thousand different variables impacting blood sugars at any given moment, but we are doing a better job than ever before managing those factors that we can.
Rebekah and I are both committed to continuing our journey as life-long learners, and that means there is always progress to be made. And if progress means amazing food, then so much the better!
So our prayers here go out on behalf of everyone in the path of the storm, everyone faced with hardship and loss, everyone who does not know peace – for any reason:
May the Creator – the God of peace, love, and compassion – fill you with the life and strength you need in this hour.
In hope and promise – DEREK
Derek has published seven books in the past decade (you can find them at https://www.amazon.com/Derek-Maul/e/B001JS9WC4), and there's always something new in the works.
Before becoming a full-time writer, Derek taught public school in Florida for eighteen years, including cutting-edge work with autistic children. He holds bachelor's degrees in psychology and education from Stetson University and the University of West Florida.
Derek is active in teaching at his church: adult Sunday school, and a men's Bible study/spiritual formation group. He enjoys the outdoors, traveling, photography, reading, cooking, playing guitar, and golf.