The Tardigrade

Samuel 1;13

Eli took her for a drunk

This experience of ancient lady Hannah has often come to mind. It is an early record of religious police almost, with Eli the priest critical of Hannah as she was praying to God for a son.

12 And it happened, as she continued praying before the Lord, that Eli watched her mouth. 13 Now Hannah spoke in her heart; only her lips moved, but her voice was not heard. Therefore Eli thought she was drunk. 14 So Eli said to her, “How long will you be drunk? Put your wine away from you!”

15 But Hannah answered and said, “No, my lord, I am a woman of sorrowful spirit. I have drunk neither wine nor intoxicating drink, but have poured out my soul before the Lord. 16 Do not consider your maidservant a wicked[e] woman, for out of the abundance of my complaint and grief I have spoken until now.”

When in my place of worship, it was often said that when you pray to try to visualise what God is like. Visualise Him as a King on a throne or some other mental picture. But I realise this may not be the best thing to do. Prayer is made in spirit and in truth, that is, in your heart like Hannah and in your thoughts. This fits with the idea of what faith is, that we cannot see God because he is a spirit but we can communicate with Him, only it needs faith that, as a spirit, he is listening to our spirit, our thoughts and feelings, which we know we have but that cannot be seen by anyone else, except a spirit in the realm of the spirit world where God is.

Well I find this works easily for me, father than praying to a visualisation in my mind of what God looks like. Because he doesn’t really look like anything we can visualise.

Then I began to understand something else about God. The humble tardigrade. A microscopic animal taht can survive in extreme conditions. It is kind of cute in a microscopic way with its little caterpillar like legs and podgy body. Puzzling though. How can it even exist? As a part of God’s creation like in human artists who leave their own personality stamped in their work, God’s personality is also stamped into this work of His. It says that he can make something to exist anywhere and everywhere in any condition and environment. And animals in general can reveal his personality in how they live or in what they do.

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