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Once there was this God, you see. The God. Just God. All alone.

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Presentation on theme: "Once there was this God, you see. The God. Just God. All alone."— Presentation transcript:

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2 Once there was this God, you see. The God. Just God. All alone.

3 But you cant be God if you havent got something or someone to be God of.

4 Once there was this God, you see. The God. Just God. All alone. But you cant be God if you havent got something or someone to be God of. You cant be the God of love if you havent got anyone to love, and if nobody loves you.

5 So whoosh! http://www.esa.int/esaKIDSen/SEMSZ5WJD1E_OurUniverse_1.html)

6 God gave birth to the universe. A gazillion degrees centigrade. Ouch!

7 You can ask a physicist what happened next, or become one and learn for yourself. Basically, after a really long time, all the hot energy started turning into stuff. Like our Sun

8 Our Sun is a star. And there are more stars in the universe than there are grains of sand on every beach and every desert on the whole world!!! http://seekers.100megs6.com/PlanetEarth3/gms_full_1%20Australia.jpg

9 Our Sun is a star. And there are more stars in the universe than there are grains of sand on every beach and every desert on the whole world!!! Go to a beach and try to count all the grains. Imagine- every beach and every desert in the world!!!

10 If God is the God of the universe, then God is really, really big!!

11 Anyway, our Sun span round and round and bits fell off. They became the planets, like Mars, Saturn, and of course Earth! http://www.nasa.gov/centers/glenn/images/content/84036main_solrwalk.jpg

12 Now all this was pretty amazing, but nothing compared to what was to come…

13 All around the universe, including RIGHT HERE… The stuff came alive! http://www.sethwhite.org/images/animals/a%20teeming%20mass%20of%20sea%20life.jpg

14 first greeblies, then grooblies, then sluggy things… Then crabs and stuff like that, then fish, then frogs and so on.

15 Poor frogs! They can hop around on the land a bit, but if they get too far from the pond they dry out and die. http://www.landmark.mdbc.gov.au/education/encyclopedia/wildlife/frogs/images/Corroboree_Frog.jpg

16 Then lizards and snakes and so on. They are both reptiles. Reptiles have tough skins that keep the water in, so they can wander all over the place. Like the blue tongue lizard in my back yard http://www.onset.unsw.edu.au/issue2/Nationalpark/blue_tongue_13_zoom_fullsize.jpg

17 There are almost no blue-tongues left in Adelaide, because humans keep driving their cars around too fast, and dont keep their cats under control. If you see one you are very lucky- look after it!. They like raw eggs- ssshh- sneak into the kitchen and give them one now!

18 Anyway, eventually some reptiles evolved into mammals. All mammals have hair and boobs and can keep warm even in cold, cold places. Thats right: we are mammals too! But before all these kinds of mammals could appear… http://www.languageguide.org/im/animals/images/mammals_padded.gif

19 The dinosaurs had to disappear!! Because they were EVERYWHERE, eating our great great great great great grandparents (which were just little rats) http://www.feenixx.com/LOE-1/Images/Dinosaur_Evolution_poster.jpg

20 Then BANG! http://cse.ssl.berkeley.edu/SegwayEd/lessons/cometstale/comkkk1.html

21 http://piclib.nhm.ac.uk/piclib/www/image.php?img=58639&frm=ser&search=neanderthal A comet and a few volcanoes and all the dinosaurs died out. And our little ratty relatives went yay! Eventually some of them became primates. You know, monkeys, apes, orang-utans and things like that. Oh yes, and humans! Humans are not just mammals, we are apes.

22 Did you know there were at least four kinds of humans until recently!? You might have heard of the Neanderthals, but there were others too. Homo ergaster, neanderthalensis and erectus

23 There was also a human species so small that they were only hobbit sized. Well, really, they were hobbits! They lived until very recently. Perhaps they are still alive, hidden in the forests in Asia!

24 Imagine meeting Sam and Rosies great great great great great grandchildren one day! http://www.ulujain.org/film/rotk.shtml

25 So the dinosaurs came and went. All kinds of humans came and went too. Our kind of human will go too, eventually. But there will still be animals around- All kinds of animals which have never been seen before. Can you imagine what they might look like? http://www.millionaires.co.in/category/science/ http://www.proza.com.ua/visions/we_are_family.shtml

26 So the dinosaurs came and went. All kinds of humans came and went too. Our kind of human will go too, eventually. But there will still be animals around- All kinds of animals which have never been seen before. Can you imagine what they might look like? http://www.millionaires.co.in/category/science/ http://www.proza.com.ua/visions/we_are_family.shtml

27 (Dont worry, humans will still be around for a long, long time yet!)

28 So, LIFE has been very busy for about three billion years before our kind of human ever evolved. What was God doing all this time? ?

29 So, LIFE has been very busy for about three billion years before our kind of human ever evolved. What was God doing all this time? ? Well, certainly not waiting around for us humans to arrive! You see, we are kind of an accident… A lovely one I reckon, but if the comet which killed off the dinosaurs had missed, then the smartest things alive today might not have been humans…

30 So, LIFE has been very busy for about three billion years before our kind of human ever evolved. What was God doing all this time? ? Well, certainly not waiting around for us humans to arrive!

31 But dinosaurs

32 Or dolphins

33 But dinosaurs Or dolphins Or even slugs!

34 Even though we did eventually evolve, God was the God of love for billions of years before we arrived! Loving the sluggy things, the frogs, reptiles, dinosaurs and rats. So every living thing is important, because it gives God a new experience of LIFE, a new thing to love and be interested in.

35 And who knows what God says to the dolphins in their dreams?

36 Is God real? Sure!

37 Can you see God? Kind of…

38 Many people think that God is like a big human in the sky… So if you look at other humans, they say, you see God. www.unl.edu/HumanR/teach/ They are a bit right!

39 But God is the God of LIFE! not just of humans, animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/ site/ So whenever you look at LIFE, you are looking at God.

40 Whenever you really look! http://www.economist.com/images/20020413/1502SU1.jpg

41 But its not just that a cat is like God, and a dog, and a human, but LIFE- the whole evolutionary past and ecological present (Evolution is the way LIFE changes shape into different animals and plants. Ecology is how all the different forms of LIFE live together now)

42 But its not just that a cat is like God, and a dog, and a human, but LIFE- the whole evolutionary past and ecological present (evolution is the way LIFE changes shape into different animals and plants. Ecology is how all the different forms of LIFE live together now) Humans are here

43 You can learn more about both when youre older. Anyway, you know how your relatives and friends just want you to be happy, and to help make the world happier (at least I hope so!)?

44 Well thats pretty much the way God see humans. God couldnt care less if we had six arms like insects Or looked like these critters (or even if we were marsupials)

45 (Imagine- if humans had evolved from marsupials we would only be pea size when we were born, and we wouldnt need baby slings, or pants with pockets, or school bags or…) We probably would want shopping bags though, imagine bringing ice-cream home in your pouch!

46 So we are not here to boss life around, or control it, dominate life, or steward it We are here to revere it, to be amazed by it, and amazed by the God in whom it all lives and moves and has it being.

47 So LIFE shows us lots about God. Christians like me also reckon that Jesus shows us lots about God. Jesus was a carpenter, born in Israel a long time ago. Not long compared to evolution, or even how long humans have been around, but pretty long. He walked all over the place talking to people, so he got very grubby. He spent most time with people that others thought were too grubby to even be seen with!

48 So LIFE shows us lots about God. Christians like me also reckon that Jesus shows us lots about God. Jesus was a carpenter, born in Israel a long time ago. Not long compared to evolution, or even how long humans have been around, but pretty long. He walked all over the place talking to people, so he got very grubby. He spent most time with people that others thought were too grubby to even be seen with! He might have looked like this (but grubbier) http://findinggod.org/fgprogram/2.asp?bhcp=1

49 You could spend you lifetime trying to work out exactly who Jesus was and exactly what he showed us about God. Lots of humans do. Like me. Im still trying to work it out, I even get paid to!

50 Anyway, I think the gist of the whole story of LIFE, God, Jesus and us is a bit like this. Most animals just live. They live, they have fun, they get sad, they have kids and so on. Thats a good way to live.

51 Anyway, I think the gist of the whole story of LIFE, God, Jesus and us is a bit like this. Most animals just live. They live, they have fun, they get sad, they have kids and so on. Thats a good way to live. But some humans get so afraid of things that they stop living properly. They might buy lots and lots of things to make themselves feel better… but it never lasts Or they may be mean to other people to make themselves feel better… but it never lasts Or they might just keep to themselves and not talk to anyone. Or watch heaps of TV to make their brains turn to mush. Or go bam bam bam on the computer all day http://www.artshole.co.uk/arts/artists/Pierre%20dAlancaisez/TN_35-16-child-square-eyes.JPG

52 But if they do those things they dont have time to see LIFE properly, or to see God properly. They dont have time to love themselves, or each other, or God. Or they might just be too afraid to. http://www.worth1000.com/web/media/34177/The-Scream.jpg

53 So maybe Jesus is what happens when God comes to humans and says, DONT BE AFRAID! I LOVE YOU! SO LOVE YOURSELVES. LOVE OTHERS JUST THE SAME. LOVE ME. HAVE LIFE, LIVE IT TO THE FULL! LOVE IT!

54 Theres more to it than that, but thats a pretty good start. The rest you will have to work out with family and friends. So thats my job. Trying to not be afraid, loving myself and other people. Loving LIFE.

55 Theres more to it than that, but thats a pretty good start. The rest you will have to work out with family and friends.

56 Not bad work if you can get it!

57 So the bottom line is that because we are here God loves us, like God loves every kind of animal, and has for billions of years. And the exciting thing is that we can love God back!

58 It might be true that humans can love LIFE, and the God of LIFE more than any other animal on the planet can. Its a big job! So the bottom line is that because we are here God loves us, like God loves every kind of animal, and has for billions of years. And the exciting thing is that we can love God back!

59 Will you help?

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61 Dedication: To Finn (4), who recently declared to Toni that there is no God, but made her promise not to tell me; then decided there was a God, who looked exactly like the bust of Mr Lyell, which hangs above the kids area at Scots Church Adelaide, being in his estimation a woman with a beard. To Bowen (6), who deduced that if God made the world, God couldnt be in it. And who found my explanation of panentheism as confusing as I found his original premise. To Billie (8) and Isobel (10), the other two participants in the theological debate I stumbled across on the back porch after their first trip to church, which in a roundabout way prompted this very rushed book (written over two nights before Christmas, one night for text, one for piccies). To the ecofaith community, meeting outdoors in Botanic Park, who constituted the church they visited, and who gave them a very poor example of what church actually usually is like, and a great example of what I think it should more often be like! http://ecofaith.orghttp://ecofaith.org To Gabriel (0.5), for so far going easy on me with respect to the God questions and who, along with his brother, looks like a little angel when asleep. To any parent or responsible adult anywhere who has ever tried to tell a child what God is like, especially those who hesitate to expose their kids to the often barbaric and frankly unbelievable bible stories which often pass as Christian education for kids. To Toni, about whom to say anything would sound as stupid and patronising as most dedications to spouses do, but who is the love of my life and much further down the God track than I am in so many ways.

62 And finally to all you parents, this excerpt from a Christmas card that Toni and I received a few years ago, from Cath James and Joel Meadows, At the end of a full and challenging year we pause (as much as you can with two kids) to ponder the situation that Jesus was born into. A poor child of a repressed race in an occupied land, who would grow up to be executed for standing up to the dominant power of the day. 2000 years on and not so much has changed and yet we still find so much hope in the story of this child, and the person he grew to be. We wish for you hope and not despair as your companion this Christmas and into the year ahead.


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