A Privileged Position

Marcia Laycock writes from central Alberta Canada. She was the winner of The Best New Canadian Christian Author Award for her novel, One Smooth Stone and her writing has been endorsed by Mark Buchanan, Phil Callaway and Sigmund Brouwer. The sequel to One Smooth Stone will be released in 2011.

My husband and I have been doing a Bible Study with a group of young college students. They decided they’d like to have a look at the creation/evolution debate so we’ve been looking at all kinds of resources and information. This week we viewed part of a fascinating video called The Privileged Planet. It’s about a group of scientists and astronomers who wondered whether or not the earth is unique in the universe. They have uncovered some interesting facts.

Among other things, they came to the conclusion that the earth is uniquely positioned between two arms of the Milky Way so that we, its inhabitants, can observe the wonders of the universe. If our globe were in any other place in our solar system, not only would it be uninhabitable, the exploration of the space around us would not be possible. This is an intriguing detail that leads to the logical conclusion that the position of earth was not an accident.

As I watched that video I realized that not only is the earth placed “just so,” but its inhabitants are as well. Each one of us has been put in exactly the right spot to observe what is going on around us and to accomplish what God desires because of that observation. Writers are perhaps uniquely gifted in this endeavour. We seem to have an innate drive to observe and record. I’ve heard many writers say, “I can’t help myself – I have to write about it.”

I began to ponder the question “Why?” Why did God put the planet in just that spot? Why did He put me where I am, doing what I’m doing? The answer could lead me to the same conclusion those scientists reached, that I, like the planet, am indeed privileged, special in some way. And that would be astonishingly true but I believe there is something more, something deeper to understand here.

I think author and preacher, John Piper helps us find the answer. He has said that everything is meant to glorify God. It’s not about me. It’s not about our planet. It’s all about God bringing glory to Himself, and, as Dr. Piper has said, “God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in Him.” We are most satisfied in Him when we are doing what were created to do – drawing close to Him, getting to know Him more each day. Some of us have been called to do that through the process of writing. A privileged position indeed.

“Lord, you have assigned me my portion and my cup; you have made my lot secure. The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; surely I have a delightful inheritance. I will praise the Lord who counsels me; even at night my heart instructs me. I have set the Lord always before me. Because he is at my right hand, I will not be shaken. Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices.” (Psalm 16:5-9)