Are there clues to God’s existence hidden in plain sight? What picture emerges when we begin to pick them up and piece them together? I took some time recently to look at myself and the world around me and jot down a few thoughts in the form of a new website. I don’t expect everyone to see what I see as its very subjective but here is the thing: there is a shared subjectivity so solidly unassailable that I would be surprised if you didn’t at least catch a fleeting glimpse of God.
I had another go at rainbows this morning.
The more I code a simple virtual universe the more I appreciate how amazing the real one is. When we try to create beautiful things we experience something of the delight God had in his creation. All our attempts are pale imitations of those first expressive acts when God spoke things into being. How gloriously amazing to come up with the idea of clouds and the way they light interacts with them; to create the laws behind quantum physics and fluid dynamics so that we see rainbows.
Beauty means something. It’s not just an experience. When God’s brush arched the first rainbow in the sky he was expressing something to us: the beautiful glory of his steadfast mercy and grace. World wide judgement would be held back and grace will rain down.
There is another judgement, a final one of fire, but before that God would open the floodgates of his mercy in giving us his son. The stars declare the glory of God and the sky his handy work but the cross put them all in the shade.
The rainbow points to and encircles (Rev 4:3) the glorious God who is both just and gracious. Beauty means something, and the experience of it and the act of creating should lead us into worship.
PS. That’s a crystal house you can see on the left. I think there will be a lot of gem stone architecture in heaven!
PPS.As I walked downstairs after posting this blog entry, guess what someone handed me:
They found it behind an old cabinet as they were cleaning out a room. Coincidence?
I have been doing a bit of programming again recently. I was building and rendering a universe, and so had occasion to sort a set of planets in order of furthest away last. I only had a few planets in each sector, although there are an almost infinite number of sectors.
If I was going for maximum efficiency and style of coding I would notuse bubble sort as it is not the most efficient for longer lists of things, but for my purposes the speed saving just didnot warrant me going to the extra effort to remember and implement a more elegant and efficient sorting algorithm.
I have always liked bubble sort because it is simple. You just go through the list of things swapping one element with its neighbour, if needed, until you no longer need to swap anything. It’s just a few lines of code. Simple. Easy to debug too. Other algorithms sort stuff in the order of “n log n” rather than n squared, although I can’t remember their names.
Anyway, my question is would God use bubble sort? Does everything he does have to have maximum elegance and efficiency or are variety, simplicity, and “good enough”, valid, God like design principles.
My universe looks rubbish compared to the real one but its keeping me amused in my free time. I started it over a decade ago but was recently inspired to dust of the code after seeing the “No Mans’s Sky” videos. A year is a long time to wait for it to come out so I thought I’d have a go at a poor man’s version in the mean time. I have always loved procedural modelling. I got into it as an undergrad and developed it as a post grad to render fire and explosions. I remember reading the SIGRAPH paper on the Perlin noise function for the first time. Special moment! Although saying that I have not used it yet in my universe. I have found some other simple/hacky methods to texture a sphere.
BTW, There are a lot of rings in the pics because I have just added them to the code. Very pretty I think. Kind of give the impression of rainbows form the planet surface.
Here is a quick flight around a small area of my universe so far. You can’t see the stars as they were obviously too small for the video capture. I love the fact you can fly to any of them. Always wanted to do that. Not too tricky to implement now with a good graphics card. Woosh – To infinity and beyond!
A few years ago I came across the idea of identifying and writing down the principles and values that you have come to believe through experience. These are the things that are particularly influential in the way that you think actually make decisions. I think they’re called something like “personal philosophy of ministry” statements. Here are some of mine:
- There are no coincidences. (God is sovereign over all the little details of our life.)
- Never act out of anger. (conviction from experience confirmed from biblical study of the subject)
- Leadership should be in proportion to love for people (prophetic word given to me very early on)
- Do something that will fail if God is not in it (heard a preacher say and it has stuck with me. The application to healing is obvious.)
- God’s love is the only thing that ultimately satisfies (nothing can thwart it, it will never end, it gets better over time not less…)