TUESDAY THE TENTH OF JULY, 2018
May this eternal truth be always on our hearts, that the God who breathed this world into being, placed stars into the heavens and designed a butterfly's wing, is the God who entrusted his son to the care of ordinary people, became vulnerable that we might know how strong is the wonder of love. A mystery so deep it is impossible to grasp. A mystery so beautiful it is impossible to ignore. Amen.
( John Birch )
By faith I gaze up to the heavens and know within its vastness
that this is your creation, planned and effected within eternity
By faith, I pluck an ear of corn and know within its symmetry
lies the chemistry of life, the potential of creation within my hand.
By faith, I listen for your voice and know the whisper that I hear
breathed a world into existence, yet listens to the prayer within my soul.
By faith, I strive to do your will and know the door that I approach
may lead me to shadows, where my role is to become your light.
By faith, I cling to your word and know the strength that I receive
has its source within the love that is at the centre of all things.
( John Birch )
MEDITATION by Tim Madsen
In 2014 headlines in the United Kingdom proclaimed: “Creationism Banned from UK Schools.” In effect the new law said that any school receiving public funding is banned from teaching creationism. Getting rid of creationism entirely, is proving a more difficult challenge. Though banned in state-funded schools, it has taken refuge in private schools. In the United States the picture is a bit muddier, and in many places creationism, even in public education, can be taught as an alternative "theory" to the theory of evolution.
On the tenth of July, 1925, the notorious “Scopes Monkey Trial” began in Dayton, Tennessee. Substitute high school teacher, John Scopes, was accused of violating Tennessee's "Butler Act," which made it unlawful to teach human evolution in any state-funded school. The battle between creationism and evolution continues to be waged. On the fourth of February, 2014, an internet debate was held between Bill Nye (popular star of a televised science show and self-professed atheist) and Ken Ham, director of the Creation Museum in Petersburg, Kentucky. Over seven hundred and fifty thousand people logged in to the website to follow the debate.
Problems arise when creationism is presented as the only Christian viewpoint. As a matter of fact, many Christian churches accept, embrace, and endorse the evolutionary idea and believe it is not incompatible with a divine creator.
The interrelationship of human and animal life shows the care and orderliness of all creation. The very idea that creation is orderly and good was a cause for the scientific curiosity that urged people to study the earth, its life, and its place in the universe. The Scopes trial offers a sobering tale of the way religion can be used to keep people in ignorance.
Scripture. In the "Book of Job," chapter thirty-eight, verses four to seven, God challenges Job:
Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? Tell me, if you have understanding. Who determined its measurements? Surely you know! Or who stretched the line upon it? On what were its bases sunk or who laid its cornerstone when the morning stars sang together and all the heavenly beings shouted for joy?
Today, pray in thanksgiving to God for your own life, with all its potential.
... for peace in the world.
... for biologists, chemists, geneticists, and all who seek to advance our knowledge of the interrelatedness of life.
... for those who would pit science against religion, that they might be delivered from error.
... for the people of The Bahamas who celebrate their national day today.
... for the successful completion of the cave rescue mission in Thailand. DETAILS
... that the human rights now enjoyed by members of minorities in the USA will not be removed following the appointment of Brett Kavanaugh to the nation's supreme court. DETAILS
... for those killed during protests in Nicaragua over the weekend, for an end to the civil unrest and the adoption of democracy. DETAILS
... that peace between Ethiopia and Eritrea will be permanent and for and an end to government tyranny in both nations. DETAILS
... for those affected by wildfires and for the safety of those working to control the fires.
... for those who have died recently and for those who mourn their passing.
... for those who are unwell and for those caring for them.
... for those, both close to us and far off, who we hold in our personal prayers.
... for ourselves.
THE LORD'S PRAYER
Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us. Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil. For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours now and for ever. Amen.
From "Pollution and the Death of Man" by Francis A. Schaeffer:
The tree in the field is to be treated with respect. It is not to be romanticised as the old lady romanticises her cat (that is, she reads human reactions into it). But while we should not romanticise the tree, we must realise that God made it and it deserves respect because he made it as a tree. Christians who do not believe in the complete evolutionary scale have reason to respect nature as the total evolutionist never can because we believe that God made these things specifically in their own areas. So if we are going to argue against evolutionists intellectually, we should show the results of our beliefs in our attitudes. The Christian is a man who has a reason for dealing with each created thing on a high level of respect.
O amazing Creator, there is no end to the awe we feel in the face of your magnificent creation. Words cannot convey our gratitude for such an undeserved gift. We praise you for the beauty that stops us in our tracks wherever we turn. We revere you for the fecundity of creation that has spewed forth life and goodness for billions of years. We thank you for the multitude of ways that the natural world sustains and nourishes us in body and spirit. We are humbled that we are part of such a display of your glory. Our hearts overflow with love for you revealed in the wonder of creation. May all the angels and saints join us in our song of gratitude, praising you forever and ever. Amen.
( Carol Meyer )
May the Lord bless us, protect us from all evil and bring us to everlasting life. Amen.
NOW LIGHT A CANDLE
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