You have told us three things through surveys and feedback. First, you appreciate how we equip you for constructive engagement at the interface of your faith and mainstream science. Second, you want to grow as individual disciples and as part of the church. And third, you seek new resources that engage science and the Bible. Specifically, you have named devotionals and Bible study materials as products you would use.
To those three things we say: first, thank you. Second, amen and may it be so. And third, we hear you, and today we are launching first to you, our faithful newsletter readers, our new devotional putting Bible texts about the life of Jesus in conversation with powerful insights from science and nature.
Biologist, musician, writer, and coffee drinker, Ciara Reyes-Ton has produced seven devotions in Look Closely: The Life of Christ from Dividing Cells to Resurrecting Corals. Artist, illustrator, printmaker, graphic designer, and sailor Ned Bustard added stunning images to Reyes-Ton’s insightful prose. We are confident this will help you to read scripture in new ways and show you new approaches to how science can encourage and fortify your faith.
We gave you a taste of what was to come with Reyes-Ton’s Advent devotional delivered to your inbox on a Tuesday last December. To that, she has added pieces on Jesus’ baptism, one of his miracles, his ministry, his humanity, his death, and his resurrection. To shed light on these texts, Reyes-Ton’s words and Bustard’s images put biblical passages in conversation with what we currently know about flatworms, nociception, microtubules, corals, fox dens and what has sometimes been called the Jesus Christ lizard.
It is designed for personal use as well as for small groups, Bible studies, or even Sunday school classes. Each entry has prompts for reflection (or discussion), occasionally using stunning videos showing God’s works as a way to better appreciate God’s word.
So, grab a copy, sit with it, reflect on it, tell others about it. Let your pastor or small group leader know about it. Consider gifting a copy. And if you want to see us produce more of these, please make a donation either as you are getting it for yourself or after you have worked your way through it.
Our Thanks to You
It is the season of gratitude. Ed reminded us recently that as we gather around our Thanksgiving tables there may be some faces new and old, empty seats once filled by loved ones we now miss terribly and even some with whom we struggle to get along. Ed challenges us to give thanks to God for all of it—even that strange new casserole—so we might “bask in the power of gratitude.”
Each member of our team will remember you as we sit at the table—folks that chose to open this weekly missive, that give us encouragement and instructive criticism, who support us with prayers and payments, and help us get the word out that engaging science truly can fortify our faith and, in doing so, benefit the body of Christ. So, thank you for reading each week and helping us as we strive for a day when no one bats an eye at the idea of a church, its preachers and teachers and leaders, engaging science as a way to make known the glory of God—Father, Son and Holy Spirit—from whom all things were made and in whom all things are possible.
Thank you! Happy Thanksgiving! And enjoy Look Closely!