TO CHEW ON: "Have you entered the treasury of snow? ....
Who has divided a channel for the overflowing water
Or a path for the thunderbolt?...
Can you send out lightnings that they may go
And say to you 'Here we are'?" Job 38:22, 25, 35
A few years ago I received a fascinating book to review. Nature Never Stops Talking by Samuel J. Alibrando is a collection of short essays on the wonders of nature. Alibrando comments in the Introduction: "Personally, I see hard evidence of intelligence in every tree, every flower, every star, and every single natural thing in the universe" - S. J. Alibrando, Nature Never Stops Talking, p. 13.
Reading Job 38 this morning reminds me of Alibrando's book. Let me share two bits from his essays on snow and lightning.
"My fascination with snowflakes was renewed when I recently read that they are not white. In fact, they are ice crystals formed from water vapour. The crystalline shape is a product of the below-freezing temperatures that converts the moisture. Once formed, each crystal attracts a microscopic dust or salt particle as its own core. As its descent continues toward earth, it continues attracting more particles enlarging its size and uniqueness ....
"Each one contains millions of tiny, clear, light-reactive prisms. Imagine millions of prisms. What a sight to consider. While these prisms break up the light that strikes them into all the colors of the rainbow our own eyes receive a sensory overload; it is too many colors, we are unable to perceive the dazzling display, so our eyes see "white" instead. With all the mystery of such splendour as snowflakes, I learned that we don't see the half of it. The Millions of prisms creating millions of colors in each snowflake are too beautiful to even perceive" - Alibrando, pp. 17,18.
"Clouds build up positive and negative charges like on a battery. Why they separate is unknown....
"Typically within the cloud, the charge (negative) moves downward about 165 feet in microseconds. This aimed collective movement is called a 'stepped leader.' When the stepped leader reaches 330 feet ANOTHER stepped leader from the ground (positive) moves UP. This especially happens on protruding objects such as trees or buildings. The swift climb of the positive stepped leader meets the descending stepped leader and BAM! The brilliant light we call 'lightning.'
"Several subsequent strokes can follow the same channel in less than a second, until the negative charge centre in the cloud is eliminated....
"Lightning is huge. It is powerful. It is constant. We don't know much about what would happen to our world if lightning stopped but it is here with all of its properties with millions impressed by its dramatic power" - Alibrando pp. 21,22.
We love it when people appreciate and enjoy the things we create (actually we don't create at all, but assemble and re-assemble). But do we ever pause to consider what God has made—truly created—out of nothing? Job 38 is an invitation to us to ponder the wonder and variety in God's creation. Let's spend some time today appreciating His creation all around us.
PRAYER: Dear God, Your creative ability, imagination and ingenuity boggles my mind. Thank You for Earth, the miracle of a liveable climate, and my body with its millions of cells that work together as a unit. You are amazing! Amen.
MORE: A few more Job-like questions
In an article about Earth and the solar system, Alibrando describes earth's size in relation to the planets and the sun:
Uranus's diameter = 32,500 miles (compared to Earth's 8,000-mile diameter).
Neptune = 72 times larger than Earth.
Jupiter = so big, 1400 Earths would fit inside it.
The sun (only a medium-sized star) = 1.3 million times larger than earth with a surface temperature of 9300 F but an inner temperature of 29,000,000 F.
Alibrando then asks:
"So, what percent of all this space does man think he has mastered? Does he understand what he sees? Does he understand what keeps the planets spinning? Does he know why the planets orbit counter-clockwise instead of clockwise? Does he know why some moons go in opposite directions on other planets? Does he know why the sun itself revolves every 27 days? Can we make our own miniature solar system that is more accurate than any clock? Can we then make that man-made miniature solar system float in the air, orbit around a centre ball with mini-orbits of moons and satellites around the orbiting planets?
.... What percentage of all knowledge does man really have, 50%, 10%, 1% or some tiny fraction of one percent? We don't even know.
Yet we still have the gall to shake our fist at the very notion of any greater intelligence than ourselves.
Amazing!" - Alibrando, pp. 24, 25.
Nature Never Stops Talking on Amazon.ca
Unless otherwise noted all Scripture quotations are taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.