Isaiah 43:2 - When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.
I live in Northern California and this year has been an especially hard fire season. We’ve lost hundreds of thousands of acres of forest land and residential areas. One of the biggest of the fires actually went into a large city near me. Peoples’ homes and businesses were lost, and sadly, people’s lives were lost as well. Many of those lost were the fire personnel fighting the fires.
In addition to these terrible losses, there was another difficulty blown our way. Literally. Smoke and ash came down like as if it was snowing. Many areas were covered in the ash. I saw little bits of paper falling down on me from the fires only 30 miles away.
For those who have breathing conditions such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) it made it almost intolerable to go outside. And it was advised that people who have compromised breathing should limit the amount of time they were outdoors.
The smoke can also affect the heart, diabetes, kidney disease and blood pressure.
Be on the lookout for symptoms of smoke inhalation coughing, scratchy throat, irritated sinuses, shortness of breath, chest pain, headaches, stinging eyes, and runny nose.
If any of these factors are affecting you, especially chest pain and shortness of breath be sure to see a health professional to evaluate your symptoms immediately.
What can we do other than limiting the amount of time outdoors, to relieve some of the health issues due to fires? Time.com posts the article, “Wildfire Smoke Can Be Terrible For Your Health. Here’s How to Stay Safe,” that provides answers and advice during a wildfire such as don’t rely on paper masks and what kind of masks do help, along with make sure to be careful with cleanup because particulate matter can hang in the air even after a fire is out.
Though none of us can imagine just how terrible it would be to live through the dangers of a wildfire know that you won’t be alone. Be comforted, as the Bible verse above states, God will be with you when you walk through a wildfire and will give you the wisdom to keep your body and health from being overtaken by the dangers from the fire.
Karen Dalske is a freelance writer, public speaker, is active in her church and writes her blogs out of her own experiences of pain, illness and loss.