(There was a stray foxhound roaming this area for the last week. He was a skinny, starving thing likely infested by parasites. After the landlord had requested we help capture him he decided to stick around in the hopes of getting food. Our dogs wanted to play with him every day. Soon the landlord’s friend stopped by and adopted him. The true story of most strays that get dumped in the countryside is far less nice. What concerns me is that we’ll be seeing more and more of them as things get worse.)
For centuries, the fledgling nation of Israel was ruled over by Judges. These men and women of God were fighting against a new sort of disaster – their neighboring nations occasionally conquering their kin. At times the roaming hoardes would devastate the country side so much so that the Israelites had to flee to the shelters they had prepared in the rockface of the cliffside. This pattern of cut and run, rebuild, and cut and run some more lasted for seven years until God rose up Gideon to lead his people.
Not all disasters are natural. They’re sometimes the result of armed conflicts. At any time there are at least a dozen armed conflicts going on somewhere between the world. Be it an internal power struggle, a neighbor’s challenge, an old grudge, or some new slight, hostility doesn’t seem to want to come to an end at any time soon. Even worse, life changes dramatically when there’s the expectation of violence. People usually have one of a few options: 1.) fight back, 2.) flee, or 3.) do nothing. It seems that in such times there is a whole new set of rules to live by.