The Cosmos and Me

The Rev. Geoffrey Butcher, Priest-in-Charge - Trinity Episcopal Church, Russellville

With robust scientific research in the last century we are even more aware of the vast nature of the universe. It is so huge that only 97.9 percent of it is visible. Telescopes and space expeditions explore its grandeur; and in our small way we recognize that Alaska is not the only last frontier.

How does it feel to be so small with a short life span? The universe is estimated to be 14 billion years old, and our solar system is about 4.5 billion years old. Modern humans have existed for about 200,000 years. Dead stars are sucked into black holes, so the universe even has its own mortuary service.

Perhaps being overwhelmed by the cosmos is the best way to appreciate it. Our tendency, however, is to take control of the life around us and to make definitive pronouncements about all that is and what it means. We’ve even tried to make the earth much younger. Some have thought that God created the world about 6,000 years before

the Christian era. That, of course, makes the dinosaurs much older that the ground they walked on. Dinosaurs existed anywhere from 230 to 65 million years ago. Oh well, we tried to bring the universe and our world down to a reasonable size so we could understand it. Good try, but no luck. The creation is so big and so old that we’ll have to admit our ignorance.

Does that bother you? It shouldn’t. Wouldn’t you like to think that the original Source that caused all of this to happen is beyond description as well? For me, awe and wonder lead to praise.

The Rev. Geoffrey Butcher, Priest-in-Charge

Trinity Episcopal Church, Russellville

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