Our beliefs and convictions shape our actions. Both scientists and Christians determine goals, build relationships, and live life based on a set of beliefs. For those of you who want to know more about my Christian beliefs, feel free to check out my detailed Statement of Faith. But the truths that shape my life come down to these big three beliefs:
There is a God.
Science may be quite effective at exploring questions about the natural world, but our study cannot rule out the possibility of the supernatural. The questions that remain concerning life, origins, and experience cause us to at least consider the possibility that there is some higher power at work in this world. I believe there is a God. A Pew Research Center 2009 Report stated that 51% of scientists believe in some form of deity or higher power and 33% believe in God. I am one of them. My personal experience leads me to have faith that there is a God, that He is powerful, and that He cares about you and me. I believe that the Bible tells us about God, His love for us, and His plan for us to live a full and purposeful life. I actually believe the Bible is the Word of God and a trustworthy authority of our life, not because someone told me to when I as young, but because it has worked in my life. The Bible logically explains why the world, including our environment, is as messed up and broken as it is, and the Bible calls us to be part of the solution. Those who believe and understand the Bible will find the greatest motivation for studying and stewarding our natural world and oceans: a big, loving God instructed us to care for His creation.
There is one BIG story of Creation.
The universe, the earth and the amazing life we observe on this earth have existed for some time. Together we are observing a moment in history and doing our best to figure out where we have come from and where we are going. I believe that God is the eternal source, author and creator of this story, and He has given us the Bible to make sense of life. The Bible tells us about the beginning and end of the story, as well as humanities place and purpose in this story. Ultimately, Jesus Christ is the center of it all. Colossians 1:15-17 tell us that all things were created by him, through him and for him, that he is before all things and in him all things hold together. If we miss Jesus, we miss the point of all Creation and the story does not make sense, and therefore we should all seek to understand who Jesus was and what he said. I believe that Jesus Christ is eternally God, Creator of earth and everything that lives on it, that he came and lived as a man, that he died on a cross to save us from sin, and that he rose again to give us new life. I believe that Jesus lives today watching over and sustaining his creation. I have experienced Jesus in my own life, have decided he is worth following, and I live to tell everyone I can about who he is: the point of the story. And if you know and follow him, he will lead you to make sense of the world around us.
You and I are part of His story.
Humanity is not just part of creation; we are the pinnacle of God's creation. We have a special part to play. In the beginning, God instructed men and women to care for the the plants, animals, people and environment He created. Mankind has failed at this responsibility, and all creation "groans" because of this failure. Today, you and I are part of redeeming creation when we study, understand, conserve and preserve life and the environment. You and I have a special part to play and when we decide to look deeper, discover more, build relationships, enjoy outdoor activities, use resources wisely, care for the environment, cultivate life, and teach others to do likewise we are part of the original plan. But only when we acknowledge and glorify that God is the Source, that Christ is the Sustainer, do we fully fulfill our purpose, and join the oceans - and all creation - if declaring the glory of God.
I have aimed to keep this description of my beliefs short and to the main point. I suspect that those visiting my webpage will have various beliefs, and my hope is that you will continue to dive deeper into what I share about science and faith. Ultimately, I believe that is the heart of God; He wants us to seek to know Him and His plan for our lives. Anyone who has walked on the beach knows that the ocean seems to lure us in, beckoning us to dive in and dive deeper. I hope what is presented here makes you wonder a bit about why a scientist would also have faith, and I hope to encourage conversation. Please feel free to EMAIL ME with more specific questions about my beliefs. Throughout my blog posts, you will encounter more of what I believe. My hope is that we will maintain a posture of exploration. See what you discover!