Tuesday, November 19, 2013

When did it start?

Often it's difficult to know when something started.  Like the rain that's dominating the outside this morning.  Not only don't I know when it started in our yard, but I don't know when this storm that moved in from somewhere else dropped it first drop.

I suppose I can go back, thanks to modern technology, and see when I wrote the first entry for this blog, but even then I don't know if the blog started at the time the computer reveals.  There probably was a gathering of thoughts and ideas and intentions even prior to that moment.

Typically a book has a start, a first word, a first phrase.  "It was the best of times..."  "It's quitting time."

I've run into a theological question about beginning.  It's not when did God come into existence; I'll accept the God with no beginning and no end, an eternal God.  It's not when the universe came into being; I'll accept science's best theories about the big bang or whatever billions of years ago.  It's not when humankind evolved from whatever hundreds of thousands of years ago.  It's more like when did humankind receive a soul.

Could this be the creation story as written in the Bible?  Could it be that upright walking animals already existed on earth and there was this moment when God made a special connection with one species and humankind received a soul?  Science traces the evolution of the physical structure of humankind and its evolution regarding the use of tools and technology, but what about the evolution of the spiritual being?

There are an endless number of unanswered questions in science and theology and in many cases, at least in my mind, the answers are not relevant; the answers won't change things one way or another.  Is this one of those questions?  Probably.  So enjoy the rain as it feeds the earth and its inhabitants.  And be thankful for a warm dry house and great friends.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Where we are

It's late July and the windrows of grass that lie in the fields for some two weeks have been threshed, baled and moved off the fields.  The last rain was over a month ago and the temperature should again be around 90˚.  It's been said that this summer is nearly perfect and probably the best weather in the nation, or maybe the world.  I agree.  Today is the first day after four days of VBS and the 17th anniversary of the marriage of Marc and Tina.

As the sun rises this morning I'm thinking about where I was on my 17th wedding anniversary and all the beads on my necklace.  The necklace is 16 years old as it was given to me and all members of a mission trip who did VBS in Wasilla, Alaska.  Its main central feature is a replicate of the Methodist cross.  On each side of the cross are a pair of beads representing each mission trip taken since that day, beads that represent two trips to Alaska, Mexico and Tanzania, five trips to clean up and rebuild after Katrina, one for the trip to Ukraine and many for local "trips," about two dozen in total.

By 1986, the year of our 17th anniversary we had built five houses, moved to Trapper Creek to start the Toy Mill business, traveled 43 states in five months with our children, and made our first trip to Europe.  Gail served on numerous committees, led the Trapper Creek volunteer ambulance service and was in the process of starting a local medical clinic.  Denvy also served on several committees and had just been appointed to the Borough Planning Commission.

As the sun creeps over the horizon I'm exhausted just thinking about what happened in those years.  And that was just a start because there have been another 27 years since then.