If winter is your favorite season, it’s likely because you like snow. (And perhaps because you enjoy snowboarding or skiing as well.)
In the last two months, we–Vancouverites–have had some heavy snowfalls, some of which were quite unusual, causing significant traffic and transportation problems.
On the cold and snowy days, especially when the snow was quite thick, I often thought how hard it must be to completely clear the snow off the ground. Nearly impossible with mere human efforts.
But, the nature did not fail to surprise me. Just after a few days, the snow was completely gone I could see the ground again!
Early this week, I read the following Bible verses in my devotion:
“For as the rain comes down, and the snow from heaven, and do not return there, but water the earth, and make it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower and bread to the eater, so shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to Me void, but it shall accomplish what I please, and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.” —Isaiah 55:10-11
“For you shall go out with joy, and be led out with peace; The mountains and the hills shall break forth into singing before you, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands. Instead of the thorn shall come up the cypress tree, and instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle tree; and it shall be to the Lord for a name, for an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off.” —Isaiah 55:12-13
Although I’ve read these verses years ago, a new understanding came to me through that daily devotion.
Interestingly, that perspective is related to snow and the experience I’ve had with it here in this city.
As the snow falls to the ground, I’ve seen it doesn’t stay there forever. As soon as the rain comes down, the snow melts and waters the earth, the ground soon becomes clear again. (Of course, the sun helps speed-up the process through evaporation.)
So, I imagine this cycle is possible due to a Divine “coding,” which is far greater than any human artificial intelligence. The same supernatural “coding” system programs how the earth’s climate works and how the solar system or the universe operates.
Well, it’s probably too far to mention the universe. As I look around, I am amazed by how my daughter, Shalom, grows every day. I don’t need to work or pray hard in order for her teeth, hair, and body to grow. (Some said that she’s looking more and more alike her dad!) 🙂
If you’ve learned Biology, you know that these things are related to DNA.
A quick Google search gives me the simple definition of DNA–it is the carrier of genetic information inside the cells of the body that is responsible for the development and function of an organism. DNA contains the instructions needed for an organism to develop, survive, and reproduce. In short, DNA is the genetic coding system that makes people who they are.
Now, the question is “Who created DNA?”
As a people of faith, who loves science, I believe God the Creator did. (I would have asked my dad, my mom, my siblings, my teachers, my friends, and even myself–none would have known the definite, scientifically proven answer. So, because I can’t understand, I choose to believe.) 🙂
Of course, our human knowledge and understanding are only a super tiny fraction of–and nothing in comparison to–the infinite knowledge and wisdom of the Creator.
I believe that our knowledge and understanding are limited to only what have been revealed to us, either through someone else’s teaching or self-reflection. But the revealer is ultimately the Spirit of God.
Going back to the snow.
Witnessing the seemingly impossible–the thick snow on the ground washed off by rain–made me realize as if the nature has its own way to solve its problem. Well, again, in my limited knowledge and understanding, I chose to believe that it is the Creator God who works it out behind the scene.
Now, what is the real problem of humanity?
Again, in my limited knowledge and understanding, I believe that our real problem is neither hunger, poverty, illness, war, crime, nor climate crisis. Those are problems, but they are the “manifestation” rather than the “essence”. They are the “fruit” rather than the “root.”
I believe, based on what Scripture tells me, the core problem of humanity is our separation from the Creator.
In a religious term, it is called sin, which manifests in our hatred of God (and of the things of God) and our love of the world (and of the worldly things).
This sin ultimately manifests in our willful rejection of the gift of salvation God offers through His only Son, Jesus Christ. This sin surely leads to death (eternal separation from the Creator Almighty God).
Thanks be to God because He does not leave us helpless!
God is responsible for the salvation of His people. Because of His [great, passionate, and faithful] love, He has sent His eternal Word, Jesus Christ, to this world to save humanity from sin and death.
Jesus Christ is “the Word who became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.” (John 1:14). He is the Savior of the world, and He never fails to save!
Jesus Christ is “the grace of God who has appeared, bringing salvation to all people.” (Titus 2:11).
All means all. This means regardless of your racial, cultural, or religious backgrounds, the grace of God has appeared to you and offered you His salvation. This promise of salvation has been affirmed by His resurrection, which signifies His victory over sin and death. Christ’s resurrection is the ultimate hope of mankind.
Know that mankind is the pinnacle of God’s creation, the only being created in the image of the Creator (Psalm 8, Genesis 1:26-28). God loves us so much more than we could ever imagine. He has shown us His love by sending us this offer of salvation in and through His Son, Jesus Christ the Messiah.
Now, the question is “Have we accepted His offer?”
Accepting this gift of salvation means believing in your heart and confessing with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and God raised Him from the dead (Romans 10:9). The “root” is belief (faith) and the “fruit” is confession (acknowledgement).
Once you accept the heavenly Father’s invitation to believe in His only Son, you will forever become His child. You shall live with divine joy and peace, because His Spirit, which is God Himself, lives in you and He is with you.
As we accept Christ as our Lord and Savior, we surrender our lives to God to be filled by His Spirit and to be used for His glory. In other words, our faith in Christ–in the love, power, grace, and truth of God–is what brings us back to God, so we are no longer separated from Him.
As a result, the Bible tells us this amazing truth: “All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ.” (Ephesians 1:3).
Our union with Christ activates every spiritual blessing in our lives, so we can live in the abundance (i.e., never-ending supply) of God’s grace! (Read also John 10:10, Philippians 4:19, 2 Corinthians 8:9).
This Christmas, we are reminded again that the grace of God has appeared to all mankind. Yes, He has appeared in the most literal sense. He was born as a baby. He made His dwelling among us.
That’s why His name is called Immanuel. Because God is [literally] with us. Jesus has declared, “I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:20).
Now is the time. To stop wasting your time living in doubt, despair, disappointment, and/or fear. It’s time to end your disbelief. Don’t wait until science and technology (S&T) can prove that the Christian faith is wrong. Don’t wait until S&T can create life from scratch. Don’t wait until S&T can make our lives immortal. Because I believe, with my limited understanding and knowledge, that time will never come. (Even if it comes, I may no longer be the old earth’s habitant.) 🙂
Now is the time. To make a decision with your life. To choose to believe, even if/when you don’t understand. Let’s humble ourselves and come to the throne of grace of our loving Father. It’s time to commit your life to the One who gave you life, even His own life, so that you may live forever in love with Him.
The next time you see snow, remember there is a Savior.
Happy New Year!
Vancouver, December 31, 2022