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Yes, Virginia, there is a God
Yes, Virginia, there is a God! You and the other 49 states that make up our union don’t need to doubt that. In the words of a journalist who lived in the late 19th century, He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist. In fact, God’s existence is the reason such attributes punctuate our lives this time of year.
If there were no God, would we find breathless wonder as we attempt to analyze the science of a snowflake? Each delicate flake is unique and cannot be reproduced. Without God would we marvel at the beauty of a poinsettia? How would we explain our innate appreciation for justice, redemption, forgiveness, beauty and creativity?
If there were no eternal Light, would we bother to string lights, decorate our homes, trim trees, light candles and ritualistically tell the same old stories and sing the same old songs? It is the urge to celebrate that points to a spiritual dynamic in each of us. And if that is true, does that spiritual reality not point to a spiritual source?
If each member of the human family were not created in the image of Almighty God, could we possibly have the ability to imagine a benevolent being who sees us when we’re sleeping and knows when we’re awake? A being who knows if we’ve been bad or good and is bound by a moral code of absolute truth to render appropriate consequences.
Does not the imaginative existence of a jolly and generous, gift-giving person point to a belief that somewhere there actually is someone who epitomizes our dreams of the perfect provider and ethical judge?
Yet, Virginia, you and other states have many within your borders who balk at any mention of the Almighty. At this time of year, atheists in Washington state and Washington D.C. are especially vocal in challenging His existence. While browsing at an area bookstore, I skimmed the contents to “The Atheist’s Guide to Christmas.” I was appalled at what I read.
Francis P. Church, an editor for a major New York newspaper 113 years ago, could well have been describing those who make it their mission in life to belittle we who light candles on menorahs or Advent wreaths in celebration of Hanukkah or Christmas.
“They have been affected by the skepticism of a skeptical age. They do not believe except what they see. They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds. All minds, Virginia, whether they be men’s or children’s, are little. In this great universe of ours man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect, as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge.”
Virginia, I am grateful that I live in a community like Mercer Island where God is honored and faith is valued. Thanksgiving is embraced as an interfaith opportunity for praise of God. High school commencements include student-led baccalaureate ceremonies in which God’s blessing is on our graduates. I know such opportunities do not exist elsewhere.
No God? God forbid! What would we engrave on our money? In Us We Trust? It doesn’t have the right ring to it. And believe me, it would have the wrong result.
Yes, Virginia, there is a God! And according to a first century rabbi, the evidence for a Higher Power is universal. “For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities — his eternal power and divine nature — have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.” (Romans 1:20 NIV).
Greg Asimakoupoulos is the pastor of Mercer Island Covenant Church. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.