God Rays19 March, 2008
I am always surprised at what brings memories to the surface (and sometimes the memories are surprising (did I do that?)). For the last couple two t’ree days at work, I’ve been working on a slide show for National Park Week. Actually, I’m working on three. Well, I’m also helping three other co-workers with their presentation. Luckily, I can do it as a power point (still works like an old fashioned slide show, and I use black for the background so it LOOKS like an old fashioned slide show (though I do put in titles stating where the photo was taken)), which makes life much easier, plus I can access agency digital collections (some of which are quite good).
Anyway, I pulled up a photo from another park in Utah. The image was captioned ‘God Rays.’ It took me a moment to match the title and the image: it showed the classic western rock spires with a few dark clouds, and the individual rays of the sun coming through holes in the clouds (they are called Crepescular Rays (Wikipedia has a good writeup on them)).
It reminded me of a theist encounter from back in high school.
I was working summers as a raft guide on the Shenandoah and Potomac Rivers by Harpers Ferry (Class I-III water), and it was late August (or maybe September). There had been a few thunder storms roaming through the area that day, and late in the afternoon, there were some incredible crepuscular rays off to the west.
One of the men in my raft looked at them and said, “Oh, look, God is happy. He’s sending God rays to us.”
I looked back, saw the rays, and in the innocence of youth said, “Yeah, the sun rays are nice.”
“They are God rays,” he countered.
I said I had never heard that term, but could see the root of that view. He looked at me and asked, “Have you been born again?”
“So you probably believe in evolution, right?”
I said it was a valid theory for explaining the world.
“Okay, smart ass, how do God Rays form?”
I explained about the holes in the clouds, but said I wasn’t sure why they appeared as such distinct rays.
“So you admit you don’t know? Then I’ve proven it really IS God, and He is giving you a sign that you should be . . . . yadda, yadda, yadda, blah, blah, blah,”
I did not get a tip.
So, just because I do not have a full understanding of a natural phenomena, that proves it is God and I must surrender to him? So if a Christian does not have a full understanding of all of the dogma surrounding every single passage in the Bible, would that be a sign that they need to abandon God and embrace reason?