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  • Writer's pictureJim Donaher

How to Explain?

(Taken from this morning's prayers)

Lord, thank you for the push to be more organized and accountable with my writing. I am still not always able to stay on task, but having a plan makes it easier to get on track when I digress. Help me develop the discipline I need to be successful as a writer. And by successful, I mean that my words, inspired by your Spirit, reach the people who need to read them, in support of their 'process.'

It is truly awe-inspiring when I think of how interrelated all of people's 'processes' are. How my work contributes to someone else’s growth, and vice versa, multiplied by millions of people, billions of interactions and trillions of words, over zillions of years.

Replace 'religion' with 'faith' and this is perfect.

Yet you can regard this complexity as I regard a newspaper – easily understood and consumed over coffee and a bagel.

For those who do not believe in you – I struggle with how to convey to them that they are not thinking deeply enough. I think that might resonate with many who consider themselves wise, reasonable and rational. But when they say, "How so?" I struggle to get the right detail.

People say 'creation theory' is not scientific. Or that the ‘big bang’ theory refutes your existence.

I see those theories as our flawed efforts to somehow explain what ultimately is all about YOU. Who created man? Who created the earth? Who maintains it always and, quite literally, forever?

If you think back far enough – past the big bangs, black holes and other ways we have sought to understand you, there you are, at the beginning of everything.

Our science discoveries are our best attempts to understand the world you created. They are incomplete and imperfect, as the understanding of anything so dazzlingly complex must be.

And yet, you give some people the talent for scientific exploration and discovery. You are the one who has made it possible for us to develop a greater understanding of the world – your creation, whether they acknowledge it as such or not.

“It’s out there,” you seem to have said, “Figure it out, if you can.”

You have done this the way we hid Easter eggs for our kids when they were little. (Except you never forget where you hid that one last egg…)

Ultimately, faith and science can live in peace as long as science can be comfortable with knowing that the faith component, the x-factor, cannot be solved or quantified. It, alone, is meant to be a mystery. Unless you decide to unveil it.

Lord, bless our scientists with the humility to acknowledge what they do not and cannot understand without the need to deny your existence. They have discovered so many things – scientific thought is so deep and complex. And yet, for all the discovery, humanity has barely scratched the surface of what you have created.

You are indeed the beginning of everything. And likewise, you stand at the end of everything.

When it is all said and done, when the world has had its time and you are ready to move on to the next thing, the world will end.

And you will continue on. Beyond this world, with its limitations, struggles, and sin. Like a paper plate, it will have served your purpose and you will fold it up and discard it.

And then you will move on to whatever is next.

But we will be with you by then, living our eternal lives with you in paradise, having lived in the world, sinned, gotten redeemed and rescued and brought back to safety by the one who created us.

Jim Donaher is a writer, blogger, and author of the soon to be published, "Call Him, He's Home: Learning Prayer to Start and Grow Your Relationship with God" Click the title to read an excerpt.

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