- Luke 12:54-55 (NLT)
On this Lord's Day, we also will have a little fun celebrating Groundhog Day. It's a day when the old boy comes out of his den and, so the story goes, if he sees his shadow, he returns to his cozy underground home to spend the six more weeks of winter. But if he doesn't see his shadow, we know that it will be an early spring. Now it's a great little tradition, especially in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, where a heavily attended event is held on this day. It's one of those little pieces of Americana that brightens hearts and spirits in a world frequently so bereft of lighter thoughts. And it brings to light that in the days before modern weather forecasting, man depended on his sight and other senses to make a good guess about the weather and like the two verses from Luke tell us, Jesus gave some good advice to His followers to use as guidance.
Man, however, sometimes has other ideas. He thinks with modern day technology in weather forecasting, he advanced all kinds of theories about the weather, some estimating the way things will be in one hundred years from now. At the same time, however, he often fails us with his prediction only hours away. Like yesterday, here in North Florida the forecast was for steady rain last night, then finally ending this morning, but staying cloudy. Well, he was correct on the cloudy part, but other than a mere drop or two, it was dry as a bone all night long. It seems to be that way more today than ever, with the use of percentage factors for likelihood of ran, for I guess since he predicted rain and we had a drop or two last night, technically he was correct. But try using that on a sailor going to see or a pilot checking his flight pattern. The difference in a heavy and windy downpour from a few drops of rain can be critical, sometimes even with life and death consequences.
And that brings me to Punxsatawney Phil, the lovable groundhog that gets so much attention. Even he knows that he isn't always right and if you follow what those folks up in Pennsylvania will witness tomorrow, the likelihood of seeing his shadow meaning an early spring is coming soon is just as often correct as incorrect. But Phil doesn't care, for he knows that it's only a legend that is fun to play along with and, besides, it gets him attention and we can tell from the photo that he likes to have his picture taken. I'm sure he also knows if he comes out in the early morning and sees red skies to the east, that bad weather will soon be on the way. Animals just have a way with nature that our pampered life has stolen from us, but to say he can judge an early spring just from the sun being out on a certain day is rather far fetched, indeed.
The point of this is to remind us that only God knows everything and just like the weather, he knows everything about you and me, past, present and future. His knowledge is beyond all bounds and when we seek His wisdom and follow it, He gives us the ability to discern many things that we otherwise couldn't possibly figure out. And when we get so smug and sure of ourselves that we don't need His help, He takes note and often just gives us our wish as a learning experience. The weather is like everything else. Even though we do have seasons, the specifics of those seasons are often unknown mysteries. Meteorological technology provides wonderful tools to help us learn about it, but when we use those tools with the addition of God their answers will be much more accurate. Let the Creator of all things enter into the picture and we will all be much better off and Old Phil can help remind us of that. Have a blessed Sunday.