Faith and Dinosaurs

This past weekend we celebrated my son’s 4th birthday – complete with balloons, presents and cake. We even had a piñata (or piranha as he called it) full of candy. Everything, and I mean everything, was dinosaur themed. My son loves dinos; he has since he turned two. He is also extremely knowledgeable about them. He often brings home library books to learn more about them. I’m not talking about cute, fun books for preschoolers; he brings home ones with the word “encyclopedia” in the title filled with words I have a hard time wrapping my head, and tongue, around.

So, what does a child’s birthday party have to do with faith? Through his love for dinosaurs and reading about them, I have been inundated with “facts” about dinosaurs; facts that didn’t fit nicely into my Biblical view. I couldn’t accept theories around dinosaurs ruling the world for millions of years. I really couldn’t accept that dinosaurs evolved into birds – Kentucky Fried T-Rex anyone?  How could these scientific conclusions fit into the Biblical account of creation: sin causing a fallen world and each creature being created by God and reproducing its own kind?

I am a person who has to understand everything. “Just because” is not an acceptable answer. I have an inquisitive mind and like to figure things out, even if I am not all that good at it. So, trying to justify faith versus science caused a bit of a crisis. How could I trust the Biblical account? If Genesis is wrong, then how can I believe anything in the Bible? The doubts started to pick away at me.

I went out to seek some answers. My wife picked up a DVD featuring Ken Ham from a church library. Ham believes that science has gotten way off track when it comes to dinosaurs. For me, just seeing how different facts could be interpreted allowed me to see that the accepted scientific view is just one option. I don’t have all the answers, and I don’t need to have them because I know that Genesis is possible.

The real issue is not dinosaurs, but the fact that our faith, our belief in the scriptures, can be tempted. I never considered it before I heard a sermon earlier this year. I had always considered my doubts as a lack of faith, not an attack on it. I would keep my doubts quiet because I thought it would be perceived that I had a weak faith, but that is what makes the attack so powerful.  The doubt eats at you, and you are scared to seek help because you don’t want to let people know; you’re convinced they will think less of you. Maybe you have had times in your life when your faith is tested, where your foundation has been subtly called into question. Don’t think that you are the only one that has those thoughts. You are not alone, and I pray that you, too, can overcome the doubt.

I now do a little editing when reading my son his books – and not just the kind where I skip words I don’t know how to pronounce. I can also now enjoy the pictures of these amazing beasts and know that my faith is just that, faith. I don’t have all the answers, I just rest assured that God has reached out to me, and He is the only answer I need.

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