by David Mayernik Jr. Editor
I began typing this column at home, sitting on my couch as five-plus inches of snow was falling outside, making it too dangerous to drive to the Chancery on the North Side of Pittsburgh.
Now, let me make one thing perfectly clear: I am no fan of snow and cold. It makes travel difficult, needs to be shoveled off driveways and brushed off cars, and is generally a nuisance. I question anyone who professes to enjoying winter as perpetrating the ultimate “snow job.” Sure, I can admit a dusting of snow on tree limbs makes for a pretty winter scene but that’s about as far as I will go with my admiration So. I started thinking about all the trying circumstances people living more than 2,000 years ago had to endure, as detailed in the Holy Bible.
Everything from Noah and the Great Flood to pestilence, famine and disease. According to biblestudytools. com, “the term ‘plague’ is found roughly 100 times in the Bible, primarily in the Old Testament.” And there will be great earthquakes, and in various places plagues and famines; and there will be terrors and great signs from heaven.
Jesus answered: “Watch out that no one deceives you. For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Messiah,’ and will deceive many. You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of birth pains.
I thought snow would be one cruel situation those alive in the arid climates during that time wouldn’t need to worry about but I was incorrect. There are many verses containing the four-letter word:
His clothing became glistening, exceedingly white, like snow, such as no launderer on earth can whiten
His appearance was like lightning, and his clothing white as snow.
Like snow in summer and like rain in harvest, So honor is not fitting for a fool.
In fact, a quick Googling effort found it snowed in Saudi Arabia’s Sahara Desert as recently as last month. But it is a rare event. This was the first snowfall in more than 50 years. Temperatures dipped to minus-2 degrees centigrade, which is about 28 degrees Fahrenheit. It also snowed in Algeria, Lebanon, Iran and Syria. The news story was accompanied by a photo of two camels standing patiently in a snowdrift, a sight not commonly seen.
For their owners’ sakes, I can only hope they’re all-weather camels. I certainly could have used one this winter.