I was set on a journey by this message on Twitter. The journey is painful, lonely, costly. I am maybe 1% along and determined to continue to the end.
My ignorance of the background of hundreds of millions of people is shameful. Yes, their history was never taught in school, repressed for whatever reason. But if I said I cared about them, why did it take up to a few days ago for me to ask Google to tell me who Jim Crow was? This is not right.
How I would like to see my relatives, friends, friends of friends also enter this painful but enlightening journey. We will be better people for doing it. How about you?
1. Pre-science and anti-science earthlings might argue over whether the earth was flat, or round, or something else; but they would be united in the idea that the earth is a fixed point and the sun is the moving object. The sun obviously comes up on one side of earth and goes down on the other side. So, the earth is a fixed point with all the celestial bodies moving accordingly. This is Geo-centrism.
Geo-centrism made sense. It was a convenient and obvious way to envision our universe. It makes us very important.
2. A scientist, Copernicus, after considerable study, and with considerable opposition, “blew-up” this misconception and turned it on its head. He replaced Geo-centrism with Helio-centrism (Helio = Sun). Astronomy clearly showed that the earth is merely one planet, among several others, that rotates around the center of our “solar system”, our mighty sun!
This understanding makes us humans seem a bit smaller, but at least things remain orderly, and we have a solid, fixed point that our daily routines revolve around. Whew.
Helio-centrism made our planet rather less impressive, but still left us a very easy and convenient way to visualize the universe. Our mighty sun, who welcomes us every moring, is the fixed point, the centerpoint of physical existance.
This was perhaps the biggest, most famous paradigm shift in science. The movement from Geo-centrism to Helio-centrism was so big that it shook up science, philosophy, religion, and worldviews all over the earth.
A Greater Shift
3. But this obviously isn’t the end of the story. Astronomers continued their research and it became obvious that the Sun is not the almighty, fixed point that we might want it to be. Nope. There is a whole galaxy of suns out there, with uncountable moving parts similar to our mediocre sun and solar system.
There is a whole lot of movement out there. And, our galaxy is just a mediocre galaxy among billions of other galaxies.
What has this knowledge done to us as human beings?
We moved from:
Kings roaming the magnificent center of a Geo-Centric universe. To
Nobles on a great planet orbiting the grand Center of the Helio-centric universe. To
Tiny microbes, clamoring all over each other, on a tiny spec of a planet, orbiting a mediocre star, in the midst of a bland galaxy, moving aimlessly amidst billions of other expansive galaxies. We hang out in the non-nil-nada-centric, incalculable, never-ending “fallout” from a huge, big bang.
This is certainly not ego-building material.
Indeed. Astronomy is a very difficult field of scientific study to live with.
Science tells us about our world, our physical make-up, and the physical ways and laws of this universe. But this is a small part of what us humans really need.
It doesn’t calm our fears. Doesn’t unite our souls. Doesn’t show any future promise.
Science is great, but it doesn’t deal with the biggest issues of life. Why do we exist? Who are we in relation to everything else? How is it that we study and conceptualize so long and hard and yet come up with very different answers? Is it even possible to know what life is all about?
Consider some Ontology
We know within ourselves that certain things are true. Such as, Human life has worth. If a leader wants to sacrifice the life of 40,000 people in order to save 200,000, we want to exhaust every possible way to save all 240,000 lives. We do this when humans are involved, but not if it is ants or fish or camels. This is who we are. We know within ourselves that human life has great, intrinsic value.
We know (whether we admit it or not) that life, in some form or another, continues after the grave. Evidence for this is found in the debate above.
The necessary shift
4. Individuals, families, communities, regions and nations of the world need to move out of the “non-nil-nada-centric” understanding of the universe into the actual universe. The universe created by the most creative, intelligent, powerful, magnificent Being in existence.
God is GOD
He must be the center, the foundation, the focus… of any paradigm, any understanding of life, the world, the universe, human existence, past, present, future, etc.. We can pretend to live life apart from God, but such actions are the efforts of ignorance (Ps. 14:1).
“He is the Creator of everything that exists.” Jer. 51:19.
He is everywhere throughout the universe. “’Can anyone hide from me…? Am I not everywhere in all the heavens and earth?’ Says the Lord.” Jer. 23:24.
He is active in earth’s affairs. “I am watching, and I will certainly carry out my plans.” Jer. 1:12; “’For I know the plans I have for you,’ says the Lord. ‘They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.’” Jer. 29:11.
He placed mankind as the center of the created universe, because we have a connection with God that nothing else has. “Let us make human beings in our image, to be like us. They will reign…”. “’Yet my people have exchanged their glorious God for worthless idols! The heavens are shocked at such a thing and shrink back in horror and dismay,’ says the Lord.” Jer. 2:11-12.
He is a personal being. He is a social being. He exists in dynamic relationship from eternity to eternity. He always has been and always will be magnanimous, loving, and true. He wants you and me and everyone willing to live in dynamic, daily relationship with HIM.
Live and grow and enjoy living every day the GOD centric universe!
2020, all over the world, is a most unexpected year for members of the human race. We are joined in a fight against a world-wide killer. Many hearts are feeling fears and anxieties and questions – deeper and stronger and longer than ever experienced before. Many have lost loved ones without the closure that comes by being with them as they pass, by planning and participating in a “Celebration of Life” service, and no burial. Human hearts are being bruised and battered north, south, east and west. What do we do about our hearts?
We are mandated by our Creator to take care of our hearts. “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” Pro. 4:23 (NIV). This was neither natural nor intuitive with me. “My heart is to be crucified, not fed,” I said, “There is a great commission to fulfil, who cares how I’m doing on the inside!” So, over some decades I have learned a few things that I want to pass on about “guarding our hearts” during this difficult time.
1. Be honest with yourself. We talk to ourselves all the time, an inner monologue from morning to night. Listen in. Examine it. Look for half-truths, minor twists of reality, or even outright lies within your monologue. Many of us possess a negative bent that is not helpful to ourselves, and not pleasing to our Creator and Lord.
2. Feel what you need to feel. Don’t criticize yourself for how you feel. Hear that? Give yourself a break – a hundred breaks a day. Feelings are human, the mechanisms are built-in by our Creator Himself. They are a result of what is happening within and without. When we find ourselves down, down in the depths, feel it, but don’t take it out on yourself. Own it, but realize that it is temporary. You are not defined by, nor locked into these feelings.
3. Seek help. If you can’t physically be with the people you need, then pick up the phone, get them online, connect with them however you can. Connect with a trusted friend or family member or professional counselor or pastor. It is OK to bawl our heads off with someone on the other end when the occasion calls for it. Do this. But let this be a part of something bigger. Seek help for healing. Listen to ones you trust. Let them help you with your inner monologue. Let them correct your tilted assessment of yourself. Face the fact that you are loved. That some people might be willing to give their lives for you.
4. Let your heart lead you into the arena of the spirit. Feelings of loss, loathing, loneness, and despair might seem to come from the depths of your being. It indeed feels that way. But you are more than body and soul. Everyone is more than a body plus a soul. There is a core nature residing in us, deeper, stronger, and truer than our hearts or souls. Every human is a physical, social and spiritual being. This spirit creates a connection with the Spirit of spirits, the Creator Himself. Let the troubles waring within us lead us to HIM.
How can this happen? How can we “know” an Eternal, Invisible, Spiritual Being? Please consider these following 4 things.
1. He who made us is repeatedly summoning us to meaningful relationship with Himself. This may not make logical sense. It may go against what you have come to believe and how you feel. But perhaps your reading this far is part of His waving you to come. Can you be open to take a few steps in His direction?
2. The Creator gave humans such great power and responsibility that from the beginning, the health and future of this universe was placed in our hands. Yep. You read that right. God is a generous delegator. He created the living, breathing, growing masterpiece of our universe and handed over ownership and management to the first humans (Gen. 1,2.) Those humans did the absolute worst thing, and things went downhill from there. But don’t lose sight of the bigger picture.
3. Every good thing you see, acts of kindness by yourself and others, acts of forgiveness, people like our health workers who serve above and beyond their occupation. The beauties of our natural world all around us, if we simply take an honest look. See thesesignposts showing us the original design of the Creator, and what is in His heart. He is a Being of love, imagination, beauty and generosity. The deepest needs and longings of our hearts will find their answer in Him and His people, but how is this possible?
4. There is something in the Bible called “the mystery of the gospel”, “the mystery of Christ.” It is something everyone needs to hear and consider. If you know some Christians that you trust, please talk with them. Ask them to help you come to Christ. If you would like to respond to this post please feel free to do so. I can be reached directly at ReggieHowardAuthor@Gmail.com. Let your heart lead you deeper, lead you to discover the Spirit side of life.
There is more to life than we have experienced yet. More to this life on earth that God has planned for us. During these difficult times, listen to your heart, search for the Spirit, come to connect with the True and Living God. I will close with a most popular greeting. “Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.”
 This has been called “worm theology” (based on a misapplication of Ps. 22:6). It denies the effectiveness of Jesus’s death for today. It denies the Fatherhood of our heavenly Father. And it denies the cleansing, renewing and empowering work of God’s Spirit within.