This most amazing existence

Part 3 of 5.

It is a most amazing day, thank you, Lord. I slept in longer than yesterday, but the dog did, too, and the cat did not caterwaul for her morning meal as much as usual. The winds are calm, and the sky looks like it will allow the sunshine through — not blue but not foreboding.

Yes — “Thank you, Lord.”

I don’t know how it became commonplace not to believe in a higher power, as if humanity, this fragile, short-tempered species, was the smartest thing that nature could come up with. The beauty of it all, from the soft machine that is a honeybee to the crushing power of a hurricane, it all has a pattern to it that makes no sense in the absence of a designer and a meaning.

It’s fashionable to suggest there is no meaning — but why build beings that each look different, like (forgive me) snowflakes, with a desire for purpose hard-wired in, if indeed it is all meaningless? “In 100 years none of this will matter” are words that comfort a soul battered by events, but it all does matter, doesn’t it?

Put billions of unique individuals on a planet, each born with the power to make his or her own decisions, and see what happens. You can’t predict any single one’s destiny — now do the permutations to predict the planet’s destiny by figuring the number of possible interactions among 7 billion souls. The math is easy: 7,000,000,000 times 6,999,999,999 times 6,999,999,998 times 6,999,999,997 and all the way down to times 2. That is the number of possible ways we can all interact at any given moment. We can say what we do doesn’t matter, but like the Butterfly Effect, we can say it all matters.

Did the Lord decide this will be a calm, sunny morning over the shores of Green Bay, Wisconsin? I can’t say — to me it makes more sense that he created the universe and set it in motion — but I don’t have the ability to see that big a picture except in my imagination.

I do know some who want to harness some of that power would keep us all sedated if they could, our minds too muddled to see their machinations. Now I sound paranoid, but humans do study each other to figure ways to manipulate people’s emotions and thoughts. Their most basic mistake is in the presumption that we are all assembly-line products who will react more or less the same to the stimuli, when those infinite permutations conspire to make us all different and fairly unpredictable.

I am not a number. I am a free man. And so are you. Unless, of course, you are a free woman.

You always have a choice. Each moment is a choice — continue on this path or choose another? sugar in your coffee? some other substance? or none? or tea? Feed the dog or let her sleep longer? Read a book or watch a screen or mow the lawn? Thousand of choices every day.

Do you wonder why I say, “Thank you, Lord, for this most amazing day?”

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