Friday, June 13, 2008

Beach Math (or "Springing Thoughts" pt. 2)

Talking with Nathan or Lizzie is like looking into a deep spring well and wondering, "where do do these waters come from." The wisdom of a child flows from unseen places. It causes wrinkled adult eyes to take a double glance and wonder at the ripples.

As Nathan and I enjoyed the cool breezes of Huntington beach as we dug into the hot sand, here came one of those streams of wisdom. He looked down at the sand in his hands. Nothing else mattered. His attention fixed upon the flowing sand. Gazing down the length of the beach stretching as far as the eye could see in any direction, Nathan stated, "The sand in the world is more than all the 'things' in this world."

Hum. I slowly repeated it back as a question, "the sand in the world is more than all the 'things' in this world." Pausing I said, "Yeah, I think your math is probably pretty close." There is something a bit eternal, and quite a bit baffling about thinking that type of thought. I am not going to be able to double check it. My wife is the math person. However, from a philosophical or theological perspective there is a vastness to his metaphor.

An old fellow named Abe claimed to have had this conversation with God. It was one of those dreams or experiences that kept happening over and over and over. You may have some dreams that repeat. Anyway, Abe clearly hears God tell him that his children would be of incalculable number . . . more than the sands on all the seashores. Strange dream. Like you and me, even Abe did not buy it. Yet 4,000-6,000 years latter it is getting more and more true. The great news is that anyone and everyone can walk the beach and be one of the billions of billions of people God' calls children.

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