Tuesday, December 27, 2011

I Wonder as I Wander out under the Sky...


I wonder as I wander out under the sky,

How Jesus the Savior did come for to die....

These words, which accompany a haunting traditional melody, evoke the vision of a pensive, searching soul under the heavenly canopy of God’s starry hosts, seeking answers to life’s most pressing issues. The searching is done however, in a spirit of humility, recognizing that God is the creator and we are the created. ...For poor on’ry people like you and like I:I wonder as I wander out under the sky.

This Christmas carol was written by John Jacob Niles in 1933. He was visiting Appalachia when he saw a beautiful young girl, Annie Morgan, in dirty clothes and unwashed, step upon a platform and sing the first few lines of this carol, based on a traditional hill-country tune. Mr. Niles left with “three lines of verse, a garbled fragment of melodic material - and a magnificent idea.” This haunting, minor-key melody, accompanied by the deeply moving words quickly entered the repertoire of Christmas music and have been used in compositions by Benjamin Britten, as well as other composers.It is in this spirit of searching with an attitude of humility and wonder that we would like to open this blog. 

There are critical issues at hand today that we would do well to attend, but often we can loose the forest for the trees; i.e. we can get so caught up in the details of the arguments, particularly when it comes to science and faith issues, that we lose our sense of wonder and amazement as we observe the world we live in. Even worse, a loss of wonder can affect our worship, shrinking and diminishing the experience. We are particularly concerned about the next generation, young lives which begin with an overwhelming curiosity about the world around them. When we limit our answers about this world to those provided by the scientific method of empirical observation, we rob these young hearts and minds of the power of creative intuition, of an appreciation for the mystery and intricacy of all that exists, and ultimately, of a deeper knowledge of the Creator/Designer who is the source of the visible world and who can be known through it. Truly, "The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they display knowledge." Psalm 19:1-2 

Please join in our discussion as we attempt to restore a sense of wonder to the study of the physical world.

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