Thanks to Marc Galli, Editor in Chief of Christianity Today, I was prompted to watch an 11-minute video looking at how Forrest Gump’s production designer created Lt. Dan’s first scenes. “I am continually surprised and amazed at how much detail such people pay attention to, the tricks they use to imitate reality, and the subtle but powerful difference it makes,” he writes. The saying goes, “The devil is in the details.” Actually, God is in the details!
For instance, our human bodies are made up of tiny atoms that are so small it takes 7,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 (7 octillion) of them to make an adult. And did you know that there is more bacterial life inside you than human? There are around 10 trillion of your own cells, but 10 times more bacteria. Many of the bacteria that call you home are friendly. Not only are they harmless, but they are necessary for bodily processes like healthy digestion.
We are composed of tiny atoms, but we are living in a universe of 400 billion galaxies so immense, that in relation to the whole, our entire galaxy of 100 billion stars is like an atom. The closest galaxy aside from our own that we can see with the naked eye is Andromeda. It is 2.5 million light years away. A light year is the distance that light travels at 186,000 miles per second in a year. So how long did it take Andromeda’s starlight to reach us? If cosmologists are correct, when you look up at the night sky at Andromeda, your eyes are detecting photons from that galaxy that were emitted before human beings even existed! (see 20 Amazing Facts about the human body – The Guardian).
Yet not only is God in the details, the Bible tells us that God is in love with the details. God not only loves the immensity of the cosmos, he loves its tiny constituent parts, and in particular that part which can return thanks and praise to Him: you and me. For “It was You who formed my inward parts…Your eyes beheld my unformed substance” (Psalm 139: 13, 16). And again, “You have set your glory above the heavens,” but “out of the lips of children and infants You have ordained praise” (Psalm 8: 1, 2). “Some loose change, right?” Jesus taught his followers, “And God cares what happens to it even more than you do. He pays even greater attention to you, down to the last detail—even numbering the hairs on your head! (Matt. 10: 29-30 / The Message). The Book of Genesis will forever remind us that every detail of this universe, from the atoms in our brains to the massive stars of Andromeda, the great Production Designer of the universe called “very good” (Genesis 1: 31). Consequently, says Paul, “We can be so sure that every detail in our lives of love for God is worked into something good” (Romans 8:28 / The Message).
Granted, you may not care for all of life’s details, and like me you may even wish you could change one or two! Yet God, in and through and even despite these details, both the favorable and the seemingly unfavorable, is accomplishing his good purposes. We can be justifiably surprised and amazed at the details God has paid attention to as the architect of our world and ou