Monday, August 27, 2007

Alfalfa, Lewis, and manure

A quote by C.S. Lewis I recently read in a biography by Beatrice Gormley read (from memory)"I find at 50 that much of me is still that 12 year old boy and I suspect that at 12 I already had much of the 50 year old in me".

As I passed a newly mown alfalfa (hay) field and smelled the richness of the sweet hay raked in rows awaiting transportation to feed bunks or plastic ag-baggers I imagined the life-cycle of the farmer's alfalfa. What is now sweet-smelling will become waste and smell enough to make me wretch in disgust before a year is out. The process of being alfalfa is like that. Oh if that alfalfa could remain on the cusp of pre-flower fullness instead of being subject to the haymakers knife, the cows bicuspids, .... Anyway, as I thought about both the alfalfa and Lewis (he had a very tough childhood of abuse and neglect after his mother died when he was 9) I thought about people and how we can look deeply at people and find a mirror of most of what we are in almost anyone we meet. Our alfalfa has manure in it as well as our manure has alfalfa in it and the same it is with everyone else. If we can love people for their alfalfa and have mercy on their manure maybe our own alfalfa will be freed to remain at its fullness in wonder and admiration of the life we've so graciously been given in Christ.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Bubba's Creation Moment

Last night I was reading from a Bible story book about the Genesis account of creation to my 4 1/2 year old twins, Calvin and Coleman. Day 1, God creates light, Day 2 God creates the heavens and the earth, Day 3 God separates the land and the water and creates all plants, trees, and flowers, Day 4 God creates the Sun, moon and the stars. Bubba (Coleman) stops me at this point. "Daddy I have a question", His brow is furrowed and his eyes are piercing and locked on my own and I know what is coming because for the first time I have the same question. "The light was on the first day and then God created the Sun, where did the light come from?". I didn't have an answer for him. I was so shocked by the depth of his question. I told him that I'd do some research and see what other people have thought and frankly I haven't found much more than "God can do what he wants when he wants" and I'm not sure that a simple answer like that will be sufficient for the little guy.
Our universe is expanding therefore it must have come from some direction. I studied photogrammetry (aerial mapping) in college and understand how the directions of the tilt on aerial photographs (the edges of a building and what direction the face) will all point to the focal point or the position of the point where the camera was focused when the shutter snapped the picture. I guess we could probably figure out a point at which all matter is expanding out from and that would be the point of creation - where God thought, and Jesus spoke, and the Holy Spirit loved the universe into being with a big bang. That had to have been one heck of a light show. I think that is what I'm going to talk with Bubba about tonight. I'm not going to just tell him but we'll discuss it.
Here's my understanding of it after prayerful consideration: When God created there was light, lots of it, enough of it that God could use it to grow trees and grass and flowers. Eventually, as God continued to create, the light began to fade and he created the Sun to be our light source, to help keep his creation beautiful. Any suggestions on this will be appreciated. I'm not dealing with a "just because" kid here.