How many are your thoughts, O Lord

One of my favorite verses from the Psalms is 139:17 "How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them!" (NIV). I've been fascinated by the vast number of details God put into creation for years now. In college I studied entomology (insects). I remember one afternoon studying some caterpillars preserved in formaldehyde. The guidebook said that caterpillars of this family could be recognized by the fact they had three hairs on body segment number 7 or 8 (I forget the exact number, maybe I'm misremembering the exact number of hairs too). So I looked at these little critters under the dissecting microscope, and sure enough when I counted to the right segment, there were the right number of hairs.

I was in awe. If I were in charge of designing and creating a universe on the scale of the one we live in, I'm sure I wouldn't have ever gotten around to planning the specs of whether certain caterpillars would have three hairs on segment number 7. I might have made an executive decision about the number of galactic clusters, but the rest I would have left to the many subcommittees of angels helping me in the task. But God created a universe in amazing detail, even down to how many hairs a caterpillar has on each segment.

1 comment:

Dan said...

Uncle Steve,

The slowness of this response should be blamed on Internet lag stemming from needle-in-a-haystack latency. (That is to say that the time it took for me to stumble across your web log is somehow related to the size of the internet divided by the amount of attention that I give to Facebook events.)

In any case, I'm writing this comment to say that your first blog post brought a book to my mind that I think you might like. The book is "Pilgrim at Tinker Creek" by Annie Dillard. She makes a lot of fascinating and very well written (it won a Pulitzer) observations of the "3 hairs on a caterpillar" type.

If you're anything like me, you're reading list is probably already too long, but I it would be my suggestion that you put "Pilgrim at Tinker Creek" somewhere on that list.