Headlines from the New York Times for Friday, September 1, 2017
A Sea of Health and Environmental Hazards in Houston’s Floodwaters
Officials in Houston are just beginning to grapple with the health and environmental risks that lurk in the waters dumped by Hurricane Harvey, a stew of toxic chemicals, sewage, debris and waste that still floods much of the city.
Flooded sewers are stoking fears of cholera, typhoid and other infectious diseases. Runoff from the city’s sprawling petroleum and chemicals complex contains any number of hazardous compounds. Lead, arsenic and other toxic and carcinogenic elements may be leaching from some two dozen Superfund sites in the Houston area.
Porfirio Villarreal, a spokesman for the Houston Health Department, said the hazards of the water enveloping the city were self-evident.
“There’s no need to test it,” he said. “It’s contaminated. There’s millions of contaminants.”
He said health officials were urging people to stay out of the water if they could, although it is already too late for tens of thousands.
Readings from the Prophet Hosea for Friday, September 1, 2017
Hosea describes God’s unrelenting love for people. If you read the entire chapter, you will see that God punishes his people. Someone has said that a surgeon and a thief both wield a knife. One uses it to heal and the other to hurt. God’s punishment is always to heal us, in the same way that a loving mother must punish her disobedient child from time to time.
In the end God’s great desire is to draw us to himself. As you read Hosea 2.14, marvel with me how humbly and lovingly God reaches out to us.
Hosea 2.14 – Therefore, I will now allure her, and bring her into the wilderness, and speak tenderly to her.
Prayers for Friday, September 1, 2017
Dear God, we respond to your love to day. As you reach out to us, we accept the embrace of your love.