By Rev. Tom Cici
Modern day physics is now agreeing with religion in showing the existence of God and spirituality. I believe that all truth is God’s truth, and not long ago I ran across a scientific definition that spoke to me and fascinated me. I will share it with you because I think it has a spiritual message that we all need to hear and think about. It illuminates a highly significant faith principle and scientific principle as well. It is called The Second Law of Thermodynamics.
The second law of thermodynamics states that any closed system, left to itself, tends toward greater randomness. In other words, if you don’t put energy, activity, and warmth into something, it will break down, it will decay and degenerate. To put simply, “If you don’t use it, you lose it!”
Take a house, for example. If you build a brand-new house and just let it sit there unoccupied, you will be amazed at how quickly it deteriorates. I know a man who built a house in Indiana, but instead of living there, he decided to take care of his parents when his father had a stroke. After six years of no energy, no activity, no warmth, no life within its walls, it was decaying, declining, and falling apart.
The same is true of a marriage relationship. I am married long enough to know that if a couple does not work at their marriage relationship, their love for each other won’t last. October 8, 2020 marked our thirty-seventh wedding anniversary. I prepared Marian some of her favorite foods, and we watched one of my favorite movies. To keep the marriage alive and well, it must not be neglected. The marriage must have an ongoing – daily, monthly, annually – investment of time and effort and thoughtfulness. If apathy takes the place of courtship, and if coldness takes the place of warmth, the marriage will shrivel and die.
Nowhere is this truer than on the spiritual level. This principle, “It you don’t use it, you lose it,” is also what the apostle Paul is writing about in his letter to the Philippians: “whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. … and the God of peace will be with you” (Phil 4:8-9),
Do these things! Practice these things! Give energy to these things! Give your life to these things! Then Paul concludes this section of his letter to the Philippians with one of the greatest verses in the entire Bible: “I can do all things through [Christ] who strengthens me” (Phil 4:13). In other words, ‘We can do all these things through Christ who infuses God’s strength into us.’
Paul is saying, ‘I’m not going to decay or degenerate spiritually. My faith is not going to break down or decompose or fall apart, because I have the energy of Christ within me. I have the activity, the warmth, the life, the Spirit of God within me.’ It is true for us as well. The only way we can keep spiritually alive and well and strong is to reflect the gentle Holy Spirit of God within us.
One of the ways we can reflect this gentle Spirit is by trusting God. There is great strength in knowing you can trust God to always be with you, to guide you, to watch over you, and to see you through knowing that nothing – not even death – can separate you from God’s love. This is what we mean when we give a blessing to someone, such as, “God bless you,” or “be abundantly blessed,” or “peace and blessings to you.” We are saying, “be aware of God’s presence, be aware of God’s abundant grace being poured out for you, be aware of God occupying your same space, and rejoice!”
Rev. Tom Cici is the pastor at First Christian Church of Hoopeston (502 E. Main St). Please go to www.fcchoopeston.org for inspirational sermons and much more.