I am always amazed when two different people can look at the same thing and come to two entirely different conclusions.
Case in point… back in the days when ocean travelers journeyed by steam ships, there were two shoe salesmen who were dispatched to scout out the continent of Africa, as a possible market for shoes. Both men arrived, and went their separate ways to scout the territory. The first scoured the towns and countrysides and wired back to headquarters: “Nobody wears shoes here… I’m coming home.”
The second salesman also scoured the towns and countrysides and wired back to headquarters: “Nobody wears shoes here… Send two boatloads of shoes.”
The two men saw the same thing, but interpreted their findings, differently. One saw the situation only as a potential for great failure. The other, as an amazing opportunity for great success. How we interpret what we see in life, is all-important.
This is true for every human being, when it comes to the evidence of God.
We all see the same things… but how those things are interpreted makes all the difference.
Author Stephen Hawking, a man who describes himself as one who seeks to understand the the wonders of the universe, once said this: “We have this one life to appreciate the grand design of the universe, and for that I am extremely grateful.” Hawking looked up at the heavens and saw the wonder of this universe. But, this awesome sight cause him to come to this conclusion: “There is no God. No one created the universe and no one directs our fate.”
Another author once looked up at the same stars and said this: “When I look at Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars which You set in place, what is man that You are mindful of him… yet, you have crowned him with glory and honor… Oh Lord… how majestic is Your Name in all the earth!” (from Psalm 8:3-9)
One man sees the glory of the heavens and reveres… the universe. The other man sees the glory of the heavens and reveres God. Same sight. Different conclusions.
The apostle Paul also looked to the heavens and made this observation: “For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood from His workmanship, so that men have no excuse for not knowing God.” (Romans 1:20)
So what causes people to look at the heavens and come to different conclusions?
The apostle tells us that those who ignore and reject God, do so because they have become “futile in their thinking” (Romans 1:21) One conclusion should be obvious to us. But there are other factors that get in the way – things that can change how we interpret what should be obvious to us. These things are the result of HOW we think. HOW we process what we see. And, according to the apostle, these thought processes are “aimless/pointless/lead to nowhere” (the meaning of the original word).
If you remove God from our thought processes, we can look up at the heavens and never make the connection to a Creator. He doesn’t exist, in our minds, before we ever look at the evidence of His existence. So what should lead us to verify the wonder of God, and His existence – is never even a consideration.
Evidently, what should be evident… becomes no evidence at all.
Prayer focus: God, help me to live in the wonder of wonder and complexity of Your Creation.