Maol Iosa – Diary
For an explanation of the title and why we are publishing this diary, please see the first entry (27/3/13). Maol Iosa = servant or follower of Jesus. I should make clear that the 2012 entries were written last year on the day of the events described or on the day after. In the first paragraph I mention “a weekly meeting in Inverness of the region’s medical team”. Later we found out that the meetings were monthly. We had misunderstood what the surgeon had said.
Summary of today’s entry: Waiting – scepticism – living “as if” there’s a God – the revolution – naturalism – Why is there something rather than nothing?

Servant of Jesus (8)
Friday 6th July 2012 (8)

Margaret had a dental appointment in Dunvegan, 40 miles away, and we drove there this morning and in the afternoon did our Friday shopping and had lunch in Portree. In the evening, we thought the surgeon would phone regarding the operation, as there is, apparently, a weekly meeting in Inverness of the region’s medical team where cases are discussed and actions decided. The waiting is definitely the worst thing.

“Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.” (Psalms 27:14) are the words that come to me. There is nothing more difficult than to completely trust in God and commit everything to him and to his care. For a natural doubter like me, it is even more difficult. I was an agnostic sceptical person for years who was determined to be “honest” and to follow wherever the evidence led. My view was that there couldn’t be an almighty God because of all the “random” suffering in the world. I decided that the way to live my life would be to pretend there was a God; to live an “as if” life. To live as if there was a God. This leaves a lot of leeway when it came to personal morality, as one might expect! Don’t hurt anyone, live for pleasure, live pragmatically and you’ll be fine. I’d write poetry, and I did. In my poetry I spoke of the great silence of God. No communication, because there is no God who communicates.

Then the revolution. I have now come to accept the infinite depth of divine love. How this came about is long story. I have told a little of it already, how I met Margaret and so on. Divine love is inevitably a tale of the heart, for it is to the heart divine love speaks and it speaks in many ways. How could a person like me be transformed in my inner self? Well, only God could do it. The naturalistic way of looking at things has been overtaken by the supernatural. God has spoken to me – and to Margaret – in unbelievable ways, again and again. I am on the opposite side of the fence to what I was before. In the old life I couldn’t believe in God. Now, I cannot not believe in him. Fame now means nothing to me. Having seen life in the light of eternity, there is no going back. The state of my soul is much more important to me than material things.

In the days ahead I will speak of miracle, for the universe I believe is all miracle. For me naturalism is dead. A belief in the supernatural is a big step to believing in God. The world is not a closed system. It is and can be influenced by something outside usual space-time causality. Of that much I am certain.

There are various ways of thinking about miracle. Here is one. I think about the question: Why is there something rather than nothing? The 17-18th century genius and polymath G.W. Leibnitz was one person who asked this question. And I think contemplating this single question will lead one to the idea of God or a creator of the universe. It is a miracle that there is anything. We now know with the so-called “Big Bang” theory that the universe had a beginning; that there is an incredible amount of fine-tuning required, from the very beginning, for life as we know it to exist. It is a miracle in itself that there are over 100 elements in our environment that cohere so effectively as to produce human beings. If that is not a miracle, I don’t know what is. Should we be surprised if such a fine-tuning Creator should be able to deal individually with human beings?

To come back to the question: Why is there something rather than nothing? For us to perceive a single element, there has to be many other elements synchronizing in unbelievable ways. Why is there a single element? Why is there oxygen? It might have been the case that oxygen was not. Where did oxygen – which is vital for our lives – come from? What is its origin? Think about it, and marvel that anything could exist at all. O, the glory and mystery of being and of God!