New Leaves

Bonnie at the Mt. St. Helens' Visitor Center overlooking the North face of the volcano

Skamania, WA

A Sobering Reality

Aug 17, 2013 by Arthur

At 8:32 AM, Pacific TIme, on May 18, 1980, the volcano known as Mount St. Helens exploded sending ash and mountain dust around the world and killing 57 people.

We had the opportunity to explore briefly the area of the volcano called Mount St. Helens in the state of Washington..We stopped at a visitor center near Crystal Lake and then drove about 50 miles to the site of this still active volcano. Yes, after 30 years the volcano is still building a new dome and spewing steam from the opening. Geologists are keeping watch and while all appears to be well, there is never a guarantee that this volcano will not roar again to life.

It was amazing that even after 30 years, the evidence of the major eruption of 1980 still clearly shows itself as visitors tour the area. Dead trees sticking out from the ash deposits, new lakes and wetlands that now exist where there previously weren’t such, barrenness where the blast literally stripped away the topsoil and scoured the rock of neighboring mountains, and the shrinking of the glacier that once topped this majestic mountain were quite clear to us as we viewed the area.

Desolation of Mt. St. Helens more than 30 years later
Surrounding area of Mt. St. Helens
Bonnie gazes up at a huge Douglas Fir tree (No! She doesn’t always carry her computer)
Life returns to Mt. St. Helens

There are several things that came to mind as we reviewed the events of May 18 and read the stories of those who were a part of the event. We thought, for example, of Harry Truman, who owned a lodge at the base of the mountain and who refused to vacate his home, even though the Forest Service urged him to leave. He and his lodge are now buried beneath some 300 feet of dirt, ash, and new lake water.

Another man scoffed at the warnings that the mountain could explode as he casually ate his lunch. And reporters and scientists who were monitoring the event also died as the blast pushed the buried rocks, lava, and steam out into the open and the smoke and ash ascended to a point where it literally traveled around the world.

The event reminded me of the state of our world today and the soon coming of Jesus Christ. There are those who scoff that Jesus will never return. There are some who know that He’s coming but they continue to live as though He’s not. There are those who see the signs but make no preparation to be ready. And there are those who give out the warnings but who are also unprepared to escape the devastation.

Yes, the sobering reality of Mt. St. Helens is an object lesson for us if we will have eyes to see and ears to hear. The prayer of both Bonnie and me is that people will wake up and see the signs of Christ’s coming and be ready for that day when the Trumpet sounds and Jesus returns. And if you are not ready for that day, please don’t put it off. Confess your sins and accept the free gift of life that Jesus offers to you. If we can help you find Christ, please send us a note and we’ll pray for you and send you more information as to how to receive Jesus as your Savior.

If you haven’t already done so, take a look at our brief movie of Mount St. Helens in the article directly before this one.