Saturday, September 27, 2008



Have you ever stared into a flashlight? Come on…you can admit it! As foolish as that was, it gave you a pretty amazing light show into your pupils, eh?

Even more spectacular is the light that we receive from the sun; there is no on/off switch; it’s a blazing nuclear reaction. No batteries either; even though the sun will one day stop shining too; all stars die, i.e. supernova. Here are some of my thoughts about the wonders of light; especially in regards to good ol’ Sol.

- Sun light helps us see. This may be a bit too simplistic, but just try walking in a strange house when it is pitch black night out, or run in the woods at midnight with no flashlight. I believe that your skin tone on legs and forehead will match that of the night sky.
We try to replicate that light, with lamps, lanterns, flash lights, and candles during the night; mainly so we can safely travel from one place to the next. Simply stated; I believe that we humans do this so that we can have full confidence that each step we take will be sure, accident free ones. But, as well, I believe there is another underlying reason for this; we are fearful of what we can’t see, or perceive.
- Light gives us and plant friends vitamin D (I used to think it was just from Moo Juice) and energy; a potential for growth/sustainability.
- Light keeps us warm. Our planet is just close enough to the sun to give us warmth and keep our planet’s environment livable and functioning. Just a fraction too close we melt, just a fraction too far and we’d become popsicles.

Amount just right of Light:
If we had light from the sun all the time, plant friends would wither, lakes would evaporate, we would lose sleep, and our bodies would get run down faster.

The sun is the center of our solar system, and has a part(gravitational pull) in determining our orbit and angle;which gives us our four seasons (an observation of how far we are away from the sun at given points). As well, the sun gives us rain by steaming ocean water into water vapor, which collect, form clouds, and as they get too full and big, provide rain. I just found out this fascinating science fact the other day; when reading one of my daughter’s children’s books (Ah, the only way to learn science).

The sun is intense in its brightness; no one can stare directly at the noonday sun, without squinting, going blind, or wearing shades. Our senses are overloaded by the sheer magnitude of the light. Even at sunset, when we can stare at the beauty of the sun; when we look away from it, or close our eyes; we see the circular impression/shadow of the sun temporarily burned onto our retinas. That intense power gives the sun its regal standing in art, and literature throughout history, and culture; to be personified as a king, a deity, or at least chief over all of natural forces. It seems that there is something intentional here to give a picture of how much recognition/honor we need to give to an object that provides such light and heat. Possibly, there is a someone that this is imagery is pointing to.

The phrase “In the dark”, means you don’t understand, or are confused.
Light is associated with all things being revealed; as in the phrase “Let’s shed some light on this matter”. This is an objective observation from nature that I believe gives us a picture of how we can have understanding in how to investigate/evaluate ideas, circumstances, etc. Light is also then, associated with truth, because what is truth, but a complete revealing (by enlightenment) of things as they really are.
I believe even deeper still that with true light there is heat; as with fire. This is something that takes light beyond revealing, but also changing/transforming. True light makes things seen for what they are; light with heat/fire brings what is objectively seen into a process of: burned, melted, and refined into a new form.

The Sun versus the Son:
Lots of figures in history have claimed to be the Sun, Pharaoh in ancient Egypt; also in different mythologies (Apollo in Greek), and the like. However, when it comes to Jesus Christ; he is not only attributed as being the “Sunrise from on high to shine in the darkness” in the Old Testament, but he himself proclaimed to be “the Light of the World”. Now we can place this as a metaphorical statement; of bringing spiritual enlightenment, but I believe there is grounds for saying that actual physical photon-light shines from Christ. Like when some of His friends/disciples were on a mountain with Him and they heard God speaking from the clouds approving of His Son; the statement was that they saw Jesus' face and clothes shone brighter than the sun, radiating intense light. Then, a look into a future event in the book of Revelation; the Sun stops shining (remember, all stars die), but with Christ’s returning presence on the earth He Himself shines, so that there is no darkness, or night in the new heaven. I believe that Christ wins this power contest, hands down.

I believe that the practical observations of light/sun have pretty strong pointers to an intensely powerful, providing Creator, that shares His light with us; so that we will see in the darkness and not stumble, and also see the darkness in us that Christ is wanting to bring change to with His intense light, and heat.

Diggin’ deeper:

“The Sun is like a bridegroom coming out of a pavilion…..It rises from one end of the heavens, makes its circuit/course to the other; nothing is hidden from its heat.”
I find it interesting that the psalmist doesn’t say that nothing is hidden from it's light, but rather it's heat. Remember, heat is the part of light that causes change!


“The commands of the Lord are radiant; giving light to the eyes.”
-Psalm 19

“I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” – Jesus Christ speaking in John 8:12.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Waiting to Inhale?

How do you know if you are really alive? What are the measures of life? Is it found in: Fullness, goodness, sheer emotional/physical/mental pleasure, existence, just *plain ol’ breathing?

In my 33rd year of “life” I have experienced quite a lot of the above, but it has only been in past 10 years that I could qualify this life as being alive. In the last couple months something simple has given me new found curiosity on a measure of life.

*Plain and old? Hold on to your bronchi; this might just take your breath away.

A friend of mine was describing to a group of us how the issue of life is sustained in the simple act of breathing. How each of the trillions of cells in our bodies need to have a precise amount of oxygen flooding into them at a constant rate; otherwise our bodies would stop working. The more amazing part is that breathing is an involuntary muscle function. Meaning, we, as humans can take no credit for breathing, and it follows that we cannot sustain are lives by this function. Another friend added, “If you try to hold your breath, voluntarily not breath, you will pass out; and then your body will involuntarily breathe to make up for your foolishness until you come back to consciousness!”

This got me in a more conscious state of thinking about Every Breath I Take; no, not the song by the Police; that it, breathing, is precious, and not be taken for granted. Further, it hits me that if I believe that this is not just an amazing fluke of natural occurrence, but rather an amazing design of my body, and an extremely well thought out blue print of function providing for other functions. Then, it gets me wondering how and why was I created. Was it just to use air, and be one of many breathing machines to run, dance, play, and sleep on this planet? Or is there something else behind our involuntarily taking in the air (mixed to the perfect amount for us to breathe and not suffocate, mind you) on this on planet that has been provided? Let us also not forgot that our friends, the plant kingdom, are somewhat dependant on us expelling the CO2 waste product from our air filled lungs.

Or is it a someone that has meticulously created our bodies, our atmosphere, and our ecosystem (plant friends) to live and thrive? This maybe too quick of a jump for some reading this, but I believe that there is sufficient mystery in science “the observation of things created”, and complexity of design in all that is created; to make us stand back in wonder of the natural wonders that are recognized as majestic, and in those just as majestic that are easily overlooked, like breathing.

So, be aware, and take a moment to consider the following; as your body conspires to force you to breathe, function and live. That with each intake of life sustaining air into our lungs; that this is a picture of a loving Creator showing us our dependency on His creative art of design, loving heart of mercy, and bringing to our recognition that He is the very “air” that sustains, and makes us truly alive.

Dig a little deeper?
Breath in the Bible - Genesis 2:7 “Then the Lord God created a man out of the dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and the man became a living being.”

Sojourner Jim