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Expanding Wonder

I am struggling to capture in a title what has been happening in my mind since Saturday.  It was on that day that I sat down with one of those coffee table books that offered scientific perspective on the universe.

I then later read that March 9, 2004 “Astronomers at the Space Telescope Science Institute today unveiled the deepest portrait of the visible universe ever achieved by humankind. Called the Hubble Ultra Deep Field (HUDF)”

Why is this so intriguing to me?  If our ever expanding universe is as massive and diverse as we seem to now know that it is, with that knowledge being based on light that is estimated to have been traveling 14 Billion light years (traveling 186,000 mi/sec for one year) just to reach us, and also given the fact that the objects we now view with that light, have been expanding all that time…well, our Universe is simply massive beyond my ability to comprehend.

That would also make the heavens either extremely distant, or require that we reconsider some of our simplistic religious concepts regarding the Kingdom of God and the God of this Kingdom.  Some scientists now even believe that our comfortable 3-D understanding of the universe is being challenged by possibilities of 4-5 dimensions, some not visible to our naked eye?  I hope I don’t lose credibility on this one?  “Up, Up and Away, in my beautiful balloon” for those who grew up in the 70’s.

Jesus alluded to the fact that something of this nature was going on, often making statements like, “The Kingdom of God is among you.”  Mark’s Gospel mentioned the heavens being torn at Jesus’ baptism.  The Mount of Transfiguration may have evidenced a dimension heretofore not seen?  What did they see, or what were these early writers attempting to communicate? 

Is there a place for science to broaden our kingdom concepts?  Is truth revealed also in Creation, the Word sure implies that!  It’s interesting to me just how much we buy into science when we are ill and then limit science when we explain our faith?  At the same time, it’s interesting how faith experiences (mine have been too numerous to disregard) are also often discounted, when in reality they imply and even reinforce the logic of what science may now be affirming.

As I look at the expanse of the galaxies and view our globe, less than a speck when positioned in the full scope of the universe, I am also required to wonder.  Wonder, not only at the expanse of our universe but that God, the maker of the heavens, would love this speck so much that “He became flesh and dwelt among us” even taking on bodily form for eternity, and now advocating for me in the “heavens.” 

Who and how awesome must this God-man be?  Certainly not the weak Jesus we struggle to communicate in our churches.  I suspect if we truly captured the authority of His Name, we might understand the Big Bang!

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