Sunday, January 11, 2009

Shoveling Miracles.

I reccently survived the most intellectually engaging modular class of my Bachelor of Arts.
It was without a doubt my favorite class of all time. Followed closely by my studies in G.K. Chesterton.
On the first day we discussed in great length the absence of Laws of Nature in the presence of God as creator. Nature comes from the Greek idea that nature, and its laws, are completely separate from the whims of the gods. Their emotional fancies could not affect the consistencies within nature at any given moment. The question at hand therefore, was that if God is the creator of all things and is continually active within his creation can there be these so called laws that seem to be separate from him? Out of this came the questioning of miracles, as we know them to be; a violation of the laws of nature. Could it be that so called "laws of nature" don't exist but rather they are God acting within his power to order his creation as he sees fit?

So then we discussed the idea that miracles are not violations of the laws of nature but really God and his creativitity manifesting itself in a way that arrests our attention in order to draw our focus back to him as the all powerful creator.

Joel From went on to toss his keys up and down approx 40 times to demonstrate that a simple act of gravity is in fact a miracle. The problem, then, is that we refuse to see that simple act of gravity as such. We refuse to acknowledge that the daily, consistent aspects of our life in this world, as they really are: miraculous.

John Donne said in one of his sermons that, "There is nothing that God hath established in a constant course of nature and which therefore is done every day, but would seeme a Miracle and exercise our admiration, if it were done but once; Nay, the ordinary things in Nature, would be greater miracles that the extraordinary, which we admire most, if they were done but once . . . only the daily doing takes off the admiration."

That last statement, I find to be particularly powerful.

I arrived back at school on the night of the fourth of January to find my driveway embedded with snow. Lots of snow. So much that I could not park. Later, as I was shovelling this snow and my back was beginning to hurt, I was hit with this thought. I was in fact shoveling billions upon billions of beautiful, individual miracles. The fact that God in his creativity deemed it good to make every snowflake different and yet dump billions of them upon us at a time should never be thought of as ordinary. How did we get so far as to think that it is?

I suppose the only way around this is to conciously think of every action thus. But that takes a lot of time and a lot of energy. So I suppose the point of this is to just say that having been made aware of this, I want to somehow uncover my eyes to see the constant manifestations of the one that I follow. In the fast paced world and society that I live in, however, I recognize the difficulty that goes along with that. So I welcome your input. What are some practical things I can do that will enable me to see less of myself and more of the Lord my God, as I so ardently long to do?

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