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Feather's Miscellany: A Lent Meditation

"We are mere specks of next-to-nothingness compared with the billions of planets and stars in the universe. Yet each one of us is a universe in ourselves,'' writes John Waddington-Feather.

There are times in our lives when we should put aside time to think about deeper things than the day-to-day run of life. Lent is one of those times when Christians look inward at themselves to see how they can live better lives and draw closer to God, the Creator who made us and loves us.

We can relate to our Maker through prayer and through reading the teachings of Jesus Christ in the Gospels; for it is through the perspective of Christ, a human being like ourselves, that we can understand God a little more.

As a Christian, I believe that the person of Jesus is God incarnate, that is, God appearing on Earth as a man to show us how to live, how to become more Godly like Himself, because it is to Him our souls return when we die, when these bodies we have now return to dust. Our souls are made of something else, which we call spirit, the part of God within us, and it is through the spirit we communicate with God all our Earthly lives in prayer and worship.

I was watching a programme recently on cosmology and marvelled at the efforts with which astro-physicists and mathematicians tried to explain the origins of the universe, the origins of life. They chalked up strings of figures and equations composed of arcane symbols quite beyond me yet which left me marvelling at their knowledge and scientific skills. They were the Archimedes and Euclids of our time. But despite all their knowledge they couldnít agree on the origins of the universe Ė nor did they once mention God. I didnít expect them to for they were scientists, not theologians and were approaching the beginning of life from a different perspective. Anyone searching for God goes beyond matter and material things into abstract realms, the world of the imagination and reason combined.

Itís easier to find the Godhead within us than look for God outside us. A kind act to our neighbour Ė or enemy Ė is a response to our personal Godliness. It is not dictated to us from outside ourselves, but is an inward response of love, and love is the most precious part of our being. If we respond to it throughout our lives, we draw closer to God, the source of all love. (And if you want to read a wonderful description of love, look at St Paulís first letter to the Corinthians, chapter 13).

However, back to that programme on the universe; one thing which humbled me, yet paradoxically also lifted me, was the contrast between the vastness of the universe and the miniscule minuteness of myself and each one of us. We are mere specks of next-to-nothingness compared with the billions of planets and stars in the universe. Yet each one of us is a universe in ourselves; a living organism composed of millions of living individual cells. Itís easy to believe we are nothing, have no purpose, yet Jesus taught us that each one of us is precious in Godís sight. He cares for us as much as He cares for the rest of Creation, and the part of it we live in we must care for, too; for we are at once part of and caretakers of it for through Christ we are part of God.

John Waddington-Feather ©

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