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Storm Chasers Anonymous

A storm chaser is a person who travels to locations where a tornado or other severe weather is forecast

as a hobby or to photograph or study it.

What does it mean to be a storm chaser? When you become a storm chaser, you will travel the country

looking for storms and reporting their activity to weather authorities. The information gathered by storm chasers

helps weather bureaus to give accurate forecasts and warnings. Storm chasers also research to improve future

storm detection and weather forecasting.

But beware! Chasing a storm is very dangerous. Each year there are reports of accidents resulting in

injuries, and, sadly, even death.

“After a record-quiet August in the Atlantic, Hurricane Ian brought a swift contrast to an end the month

of September. The powerful storm left communities looking like war zones, cut power to millions, and

became the deadliest tropical system to hit Florida in more than 87 years. With the sheer magnitude of

destruction the storm left in its wake, it is certain that Ian has also carved its name into the annals of history. For

example:

“Wind gusts reached 128 mph in Florida, rainfall totals greater than 20 inches, power outages that

soared past 3 million. These are just a few statistics behind Ian’s devastating journey.”

One reporter in Omaha, Nebraska, which seems to be one of the more popular areas for chasers to

operate because of the frequency of tornadoes there, reported, “there are often hundreds of storm chasers

lining the roads.”

What’s with this bizarre pre-occupation of watching the formation and activity of a storm―the dynamic

and power of an invisible force? Hurricanes are devastating … Luke’s writings about a storm are found in the

Bible in Acts 27:14-19. He begins his description of the battery by first writing about the wind. “… there arose

against [us] a tempestuous wind, called Euroclydon. (the Northeaster). And when the ship was caught and could

not bear up into the wind, we let her drive. And running under a certain island called Clauda, we had much

work to come by the boat [to save it]. When they had taken up, they used helps, undergirding the ship; and,

fearing lest they should fall into the quicksands, strake sail and so were driven. And we being exceedingly

tossed with a tempest, the next day they lightened the ship; And the third day we cast out with our own hands

the ship’s tackling.” 

Mark writes of an incident involving a storm. In 4:37-41, he says, “And there arose a great storm of

wind, and the waves beat into the ship so that it was now full. And he [Jesus] was in the hinder part of the ship,

asleep on a pillow: and they [the disciples] awake him, and say unto him, Master, carest thou not that we

perish? And he arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and

there was a great calm. And he said unto them, Why are ye so fearful? How is it that ye have no faith? And they

feared exceedingly, and said one to another, What manner of man is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him? 

Well, my wife and I were in the midst of Hurricane Ian … in a hotel room in Orlando, Florida. We were

safe, dry, warm―and in great awe as we watched out of the 5 th -floor window. The wind whipped large palm

trees around like a cheerleader shaking a pom-pom. We were OK. We survived! Eventually, Ian went on his

way, and the storm ceased to blow.

But more than that, we knew the Master of the wind!

Francis Mason

Pastor Mason

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