Friday, July 24, 2009

When I was an atheist I thought I knew it all. I thought I was wise because I followed man's wisdom. I read the writings of Richard Dawkins and thought I was smart. Now I follow my heart and realize I am human and I have many faults. My mind and brain are not perfect and there are many things I do not know. I do not know how God created the Universe. I do not know why he did not make human beings perfect but I do know he has a perfect plan.

1 Corinthians 2

1When I came to you, brothers, I did not come with eloquence or superior wisdom as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God.[a] 2For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. 3I came to you in weakness and fear, and with much trembling. 4My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit's power, 5so that your faith might not rest on men's wisdom, but on God's power.

Wisdom From the Spirit 6We do, however, speak a message of wisdom among the mature, but not the wisdom of this age or of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. 7No, we speak of God's secret wisdom, a wisdom that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began. 8None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. 9However, as it is written: "No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him"[b]— 10but God has revealed it to us by his Spirit.

The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. 11For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the man's spirit within him? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. 12We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us. 13This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truths in spiritual words.[c] 14The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned. 15The spiritual man makes judgments about all things, but he himself is not subject to any man's judgment: 16"For who has known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct him?"[d] But we have the mind of Christ.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Running Away

I'm suffering. But it's not God's fault. It's mine. You see, I have Bipolar Disorder and I am not getting better. I go through periods when I'm happy and motivated and then...stress. Stress is a normal part of everyone's life but for a person with BP, stress can trigger a full blown episode. I can't stop crying and I want to pray but I'm so tired and so sad that all I feel like doing is sleeping. And dying. I wish someone would pray for me because I can't keep going on this roller coaster I call life.

I know if I just turn my life over to God I'd be so much better off. So, why don't I do just that?

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Does Science Make Belief in God Obsolete?

Of course not.

Science itself does not contradict the hypothesis of God. Rather, it gives us a window on a dynamic and creative universe that expands our appreciation of the Divine in ways that could not have been imagined in ages past.

As an outspoken defender of evolution, I am often challenged by those who assume that if science can demonstrate the natural origins of our species, which it surely has, then God should be abandoned. But the Deity they reject so easily is not the one I know. To be threatened by science, God would have to be nothing more than a placeholder for human ignorance. This is the God of the creationists, of the "intelligent design" movement, of those who seek their God in darkness. What we have not found and do not yet understand becomes their best - indeed their only - evidence for faith. As a Christian, I find the flow of this logic particularly depressing. Not only does it teach us to fear the acquisition of knowledge (which might at any time disprove belief), but it also suggests that God dwells only in the shadows of our understanding. I suggest that if God is real, we should be able to find him somewhere else - in the bright light of human knowledge, spiritual and scientific.

And what a light that is. Science places us in an extraordinary universe, a place where stars and even galaxies continue to be born, where matter itself comes alive, evolves, and rises to each new challenge of its richly changing environment. We live in a world literally bursting with creative evolutionary potential, and it is quite reasonable to ask why that is so. To a person of faith, the answer to that question is God.

The English poet Matthew Arnold, at the dawn of the modern era, once lamented that all he could hear of the "Sea of Faith" was its "melancholy, long, withdrawing roar." To some, that melancholy roar is a sound to be savored because faith is a delusion, an obstacle, a stumbling block on the road to progress and enlightenment. It is the antithesis of science.

In this view, God is an explanation for the weak, a way out for those who cannot face the terrible realities revealed by science. The courageous, the bold, the "brights" are those who face that reality and accept it without the comforting crutch of faith by declaring God to be obsolete.

But science itself employs a kind of faith, a faith all scientists share, whether they are religious in the conventional sense or not. Science is built upon a faith that the world is understandable, and that there is a logic to reality that the human mind can explore and comprehend. It also holds, as an article of scientific faith, that such exploration is worth the trouble, because knowledge is always to be preferred to ignorance.

The categorical mistake of the atheist is to assume that God is natural, and therefore within the realm of science to investigate and test. By making God an ordinary part of the natural world, and failing to find Him there, they conclude that He does not exist. But God is not and cannot be part of nature. God is the reason for nature, the explanation of why things are. He is the answer to existence, not part of existence itself.

There is great naiveté in the assumption that our presence in the universe is self-explanatory, and does not require an answer. Many who reject God imply that reasons for the existence of an orderly natural world are not to be sought. The laws of nature exist simply because they are, or because we find ourselves in one of countless "multiverses" in which ours happens to be hospitable to life. No need to ask why this should be so, or inquire as to the mechanism that generates so many worlds. The curiosity of the theist who embraces science is greater, not less, because he seeks an explanation that is deeper than science can provide, an explanation that includes science, but then seeks the ultimate reason why the logic of science should work so well. The hypothesis of God comes not from a rejection of science, but from a penetrating curiosity that asks why science is even possible, and why the laws of nature exist for us to discover.

It is true, of course, that organized religions do not point to a single, coherent view of the nature of God. But to reject God because of the admitted self-contradictions and logical failings of organized religion would be like rejecting physics because of the inherent contradictions of quantum theory and general relativity. Science, all of science, is necessarily incomplete - this is, in fact, the reason why so many of us find science to be such an invigorating and fulfilling calling. Why, then, should we be surprised that religion is incomplete and contradictory as well? We do not abandon science because our human efforts to approach the great truths of nature are occasionally hampered by error, greed, dishonesty, and even fraud. Why then should we declare faith a "delusion" because belief in God is subject to exactly the same failings?

Albert Einstein once wrote that "the eternal mystery of the world is its comprehensibility." Today, even as science moves ahead, that mystery remains. Is there a genuine place for faith in the world of science? Indeed there is. Far from standing in conflict with it, the hypothesis of God validates not only our faith in science, but our sheer delight at the gifts of knowledge, love, and life.

By Kenneth Miller author of Finding Darwin's God

Friday, May 29, 2009

Prayer in Schools

"Don't pray in my school and I won't think in your church"

I have seen the above bumper sticker a few times. I'm not altogether sure that I disagree with it. Church is for learning spiritual values and school is for getting an education.

The truth is that we live in America and like it or not, other people have the freedom to choose their religion.

If you want to reach out to America's youth their are many ways to do it but trying to force prayer back into the public school system seems like a waste of time. It's illegal and it's not going to happen. Following man's law shows reverence for our Heavenly Father.

In the end the only person I have to answer for is myself. I don't need to control what everyone else thinks or believes in order to be secure in my own faith.

Theistic Evolution: How Does God Do It?

Theistic Evolution is a form of creationism that limits God's involvement in the creation event. The chief limitation is that most of God's activity has to be consistent with the facts of evolution. Francis Collins has created a website devoted to his concept of BioLogos, which, as it turns out, is just another word for Theistic Evolution. The website is funded by a grant from the John Templeton Foundation. Many of us have difficulty understanding how a personal God can be involved in guiding evolution without violating the laws of physics and chemistry. In other words, how is Theistic Evolution/BioLogos compatible with science? This is a key question since we know that major scientific organizations (AAAS, NAS, NCSE) support the notion that science and religion are compatible. In fact, they explicitly support Francis Collins (pictured above) and Theistic Evolution.

Let's see how science and religion are compatible by looking at Question 14 on the BioLogos website [What role could God have in evolution?].

Thursday, May 28, 2009

The New Atheists

I found this post over at another blog and wanted to share it here.

The new atheists: summary of arguments

Rev. Cwirla, in his review of the Charlotte Allen article on atheism that I linked to in my previous post, summarizes the new atheist (Dawkins, Hitchens, Harris, Dennett, Myers, et al.) arguments as follows:

1. The existence of God can’t be proven scientifically, therefore there is no God.
2. Religious people do bad things, therefore there is no God.
3. No one has yet to convince me there is a God, therefore there is no God.
4. The world sucks, therefore there is no God.
5. Santa Claus and the Tooth Fairy don’t exist, therefore there is no God.
Pretty good summary of the shallowness of modern atheism.

Go to Rev. Cwirla’s Blogosphere for his descriptions of the “Fab Five of pop atheism.”

Grace and Peace

HT: Cranach

Original Post:

The Living Word

Jesus asked his followers, "Who do you say that I am?"

That can be a difficult question to answer if you do not read the Word of God. As Charles Stanley points out in his book, In Step with God, we must read His word in order to find out His ways.

God, in the form of the Trinity, is a very complex spiritual being that is outside the human realm of definition. Yet we still need to define our needs and how Jesus came to fufill those needs.

Jesus also said, "I came not to bring peace, but a sword." Many have trouble with this passage. For me it simply means that Jesus is handing us a sword (not a scalpel) to cut out the deadwood from our lives. It doesn't mean taking the sword and harming others. We have to look at the symbolism behind some of the words Jesus used instead of interpreting everything literally if we are to gain meaning and purpose for our lives from the Word of God.

The Bible is a Living thing and can mean different things at different times to different people in different situtions. To put it in a safe, definitive category is to deny its power.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

My New Bible

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

In the Church by ~zero

The Gospel of Thomas

Jesus said, "The Father's kingdom is like a person who has [good] seed. His enemy came during the night and sowed weeds among the good seed. The person did not let the workers pull up the weeds, but said to them, 'No, otherwise you might go to pull up the weeds and pull up the wheat along with them.' For on the day of the harvest the weeds will be conspicuous, and will be pulled up and burned." (57)

I have recently begun reading The Gospel of Thomas while also taking up a twelve week Bible Study on Proverbs (Kay Arthur) at Olive Baptist Church. Between the two studies I am learning a great deal about human frailty and well....failure.

I fail on a daily basis to live up to God's will for me but each day I realize where I went wrong and the next day I do something to correct it. I strive not for perfection but to walk in the will of God each and every day and to serve others.

I am struggling to keep my mind from the things of the past. I am struggling to keep my head up despite those who don't believe in me.

The bottom line is that the only opinion I am truly concerned with is that of Jesus Christ, The Father and the Holy Spirit!


Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Jesus: He's Everywhere

Job's Faith

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Thankful for All My Blessings Today!

About a month ago my doctor raised the dosage of the anti-depressant, Zoloft, which I am taking for anxiety and depression. The result was not good. I ended up going to the hospital and was under observation for three days. They put me on two more medications and I felt worse after taking them! So, I'm back to the original dose of Zoloft and am feeling a little better.

I don't know about any of you, but being God's servant, I don't want to be on ANY kind of drugs. But, I realize I have human limitations and that I have a chemical imbalance. I do wish that one day I would not have to take any of these things.

Please pray for me!

Your sister in Christ,

Heather Hawkins

Tuesday, May 5, 2009


Friday, May 1, 2009

Finding A Better Way

The I Am Second campaign shows people how to put things in perspective. It shows us how to put God first.

According to their website at life is about:

Finding a better way.

I am second is a movement where significance in life is a shared value among people of all kinds. Actors. Musicians. Business leaders. Your next-door neighbor. People just like you. Their authentic stories here on iamsecond provide insight into dealing with typical struggles of everyday living. You'll meet people who overcame destructive lifestyles. Plus you'll discover those who've tried to go it alone and have failed, yet still found a life full of hope, peace, and fulfillment.

The Clergy Letter Project

For too long, the misperception that science and religion are inevitably in conflict has created unnecessary division and confusion, especially concerning the teaching of evolution. I wanted to let the public know that numerous clergy from most denominations have tremendous respect for evolutionary theory and have embraced it as a core component of human knowledge, fully harmonious with religious faith.
In the fall of 2004, I worked with clergy throughout Wisconsin to prepare a statement in support of teaching evolution. We were called to action by a series of anti-evolution policies passed by the school board in Grantsburg, WI. The response was overwhelming. In a few weeks, nearly 200 clergy signed the statement, which we sent to the Grantsburg school board on December 16, 2004. Additionally, groups of educators and scientists sent letters to the Grantsburg School Board and to the Superintendent of Schools protesting these policies. In response to all of this attention, as well as the efforts of others, the Grantsburg School Board retracted their policies.
The outpouring of support from clergy around the country encouraged me to make this a nationwide project. If you want to read more about it or join us in sharing this important perspective, click here. Encourage your clergy to consider signing the statement and please feel free to link to these webpages. And, while the current focus is on Christian clergy, please let me know if you are willing to write and/or host a statement from other religions.
The Clergy Letter Project has also sponsored annual Evolution Sunday events. These events provide an opportunity for congregations around the world to come together, in the way each feels most comfortable, to discuss the compatibility of religion and science. By doing so, we are educating thousands and elevating the world-wide discussion of this important topic. If your congregation would like to participate in an Evolution Sunday event, please contact me.
Most recently, The Clergy Letter Project has created a data base of scientists interested in working with clergy members to answer questions about all aspects of evolution. To view this growing list, click here (If you are a scientist and would like to be added to our data base, please send me a note.)


Michael Zimmerman
Dean College of Liberal Arts and SciencesButler University
Send your comments to me at

Real Hope

For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men. It teaches us to say "No" to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, while we wait for the blessed hope—the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good.

~ Titus 2:11-14

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

FAITH by Simone Byrne Photography

Amanda Catherine Hawkins

This is my gorgeous, wonderful daughter. She's a genius just like her momma! LOL :P

Biblical Jabberwocky

The sky was dark, the earth was bright,
Its green was all a gray.
It dawned on me that very night,
I must leave this world to stay.

No bricks or wood could my home make,
No fire could keep me warm.
The truth had been a grave mistake,
Its safety had brought harm.

The Son of Man, The Son of God,
By chance, there was a plan.
What made sense was very odd,
That God should be a man.

I found my life in dying, then;
My weakness made me strong.
Self-hatred let me love again,
Set apart, I now belong.
by A.S.A. Jones from

The Four Witnesses

I picked this book up today at my Church library. Thank you God for Cokesbury United Methodist Church in Pensacola! You guys are so awesome! It's called The Four Witnesses by Robin Griffith-Jones.

Jesus himself asked, "Who do you say that I am?" In this book, you'll find out why four of his followers give strikingly different accounts of the life of Jesus.

Faith is the Basis for the Revealing of God's Righteousness in a Christian's Life

"For in it (in the gospel) the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, 'But the righteous man shall live by faith.'" (Romans 1:17).

"But now apart from the Law the righteousness of God has been manifested, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ ... whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in His blood through faith. This was to demonstrate His righteousness ... that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus." (Romans 3:21-26).

"For this reason it is by faith, that it might be in accordance with grace, in order that the promise may be certain to all the descendants, not only to those who are of the Law, but also to those who are of the faith of Abraham, who is the father of us all." (Romans 4:16)

"Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ."(Romans 5:1).

"So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ." (Romans 10:17).

"The life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God." (Galatians 2:20).

From Skepticism to Worship

This persons story is from and is his story of how he came to embrace Christ. Thank you for allowing me to share it here...

by A.S.A. Jones 09/01/02

I was a devout atheist for over twenty years. In July of 1998, I finally managed to see the biblical truths that had managed to elude me. The following is an account of how I went from hardcore skepticism to hardcore worship of the Savior, Jesus Christ.

I was raised a Roman Catholic in a home where the name of Jesus Christ and God was never mentioned. I was encouraged to attend catechism and church every weekend, but the concept of God was never made completely real to me. I entertained the notion as any child would, but I just wasn't into the imaginary friend scene and by the time I was thirteen, I had concluded that God was merely a vicious adult version of the Easter bunny. I abandoned the lie, informed my upset parents that I would no longer be attending church, and began seeking truth.
In the absence of a religious belief to answer life's questions, I turned my mental energy to science. Science had an awesome track record of solving many problems and its resulting technology had provided tangible benefits to all of mankind. Science was the answer! I reasoned that if we could educate our populations and continue to make advances in medicine, agriculture and energy production, we would one day have the mythical Eden as our reality.
I threw myself into my studies, determined to become a scientific messiah who would one day deliver people from the bondage of disease. At the age of sixteen, my IQ and my grades made me eligible for my high school's early release program and I began my studies in biology and chemistry at the University of Pittsburgh.

Read the rest of the story here:

Tuesday, April 28, 2009


Is God an ultimate Answer?
Or is He a living, pulsing Question?
Do we trouble Him with our Questions?
Or are We the still unfinished Answers to his Quest?
If so, do we have the courage to bear Him as a Question?
Not the question of whether He ‘is’ or is not, but
The question that He is, and that we are too.
Is all our Questioning a fruitless pursuit?
Or is it the very pulsation of His own Divine Quest?
A Quest of whichWe ourselves are the fruit.
Is faith to be found through religious belief?
Through the model answers of modern science?
Through the false certitude of Final Solutions,
or in The true Zone of the Divine - the Zone of the Question?
This Zone of the Question can become a tomb or a womb.
For some the Zone is a prison and a place of torment and torture.
But it is the same Zone that is the source of wonder and terror.
That is both a barrier and a gateway to the countless worlds.
The Question is ours to open or foreclose, to bear with,
Live and flourish from, or shy away and die to.
“Questioning is the piety of thinking.”
It is a Questing of the soul that answers only to Him.
The Questing soul is a holy soul, infused with His inner vitality.
A soul at home in his Divine Zone – the Zone of the Question.
Therefore do not ply Him with your questions, but
Listen to the question that you Are.
The question that you are is His question too.
Be the question and you will Become the answer.
An answer that never ceases to grow nor ever becomes Old in its certainties, but is ever refreshed from theRoots of its unknowing, Questing Being.
What is a Question if not the oscillation of a relation?
What is this oscillation if not the essence of energy; vitality itself?
What then, is the relation that matters most, that is most vital to us,
If not the oscillation that matters the very vitality of our Questing,
Answering itself as atoms and molecules, stars and galaxies.
As the very flesh and blood of which we are composed.
Those who only seek Answers to Questions
Forget that the source of all Answers is a Question.
A cosmic ‘Big Bang’ is not a Question but an Answer.
Just so, a great Cosmic Creator, a Cosmocrat of the All.
No science or religion that quests ultimate Answers to
All and Everything can comprehend Anything at all.
No soul content with its own Answers can enter
The Zone of the Divine, or find the meaning ofHis Quest,
His dark cosmic matterings.

What is a Christian Gnostic?

Gnostic Christianity is a Way of Life based on the original teachings of Jesus Christ. A gnostic is a person who believes that salvation is gained through the acquisition of divine knowledge or gnosis. Gnostic Christians believe that the knowledge necessary for salvation has been revealed through Jesus Christ. Gnostics recognize that this world is subject to powers of darkness that distort our concept of reality. As Jesus explained, "The shadows of this world are perceived by mortals, and they think they know the Truth, but the Reality which casts the shadows is hidden from them, and they do not perceive the Light." (Sayings 2:2)

When gnostics speak of salvation, they mean being freed from these illusions of darkness so that they can perceive Reality. As Jesus said, "I tell you the truth when I say that only when you perceive shadows as shadows, and search the Light, will you perceive the Reality which is God." (IBID.) He also said, "If you continue to acquire gnosis through me and live by the principles I teach, you will be my true disciples. Then you will learn of Truth, and Truth will set you free." (Testimony of St. John 8:31-32)

While Jesus used symbolic parables to motivate his hearers to search for the knowledge of Truth, he privately entrusted to his disciples gnosis, experiential knowledge which they could share only with those who became their fellow disciples. On one occasion, Jesus said to his disciples,

It is your privilege to learn the mysteries of the realm of the Eloheim because you have entered the Covenant," Jesus replied, "but to those who remain outside the Covenant, Truth can be shown only in parables. This is because they live in a world of illusions and shadows where Truth is hidden from them. Only the shadow of Truth can reach them until they reject the lie and come into the Covenant of Light." *** In this way, Jesus used many parables to point their minds to the word, for the parables were all they were able to receive, but through the parables, some of them would have their minds opened and would begin to perceive the Inner Truth. When he was alone with his disciples, however, Jesus expounded these principles, unfolding before their minds greater Light and carrying them deeper into the mysteries of the spiritual realm. (Testimony of St. Mark 4:10-11, 26-27)

My Precious Angel

This is my beautiful daughter Amanda Catherine Hawkins. She'll be four in June. Thank You God for bringing her into my life. She's a wonderful blessing and is such a joy!

God's Landscape

These pictures were taken with a Sony DSC-H1 in the Summer of 2008 at the Loveland, Colorado Civic Center and Library park. I have many more I will be posting this week...stay tuned...

Thank You God for All My Friends

Dear God,

I have so many wonderful friends that I had forgotten about until I joined Facebook. Every week someone from the distant past finds me there. I didn't know so many people cared about me or even considered me their friend.

Thank you God for bringing them back into my life after so long. I didn't even realize I had SO MANY friends!!! Heck, some of the people who looked me up are people I really didn't think even cared for me or would even remember me.

I am so blessed because friendship is truly a golden thing to have in this world.

One of my friends, Stacey, is such a joy. Every time I think about her I have to laugh because we have such great memories. We were always laughing and if life was sucking hard we made fun of ourselves.

To Stacey:

Nature's first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf's a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.