By Jen Hersey
Cherished Women’s Blog Writer
So, you may have already figured this out, but I am very uncool.
I spent last weekend reading a book about paradoxes in physics.
One chapter talked about Heinrich Wilhelm Olbers, who stepped outside one night and asked a simple question:
“Why is it dark?”
Yes, the earth rotates away from the sun at night, but the universe is full of an infinite number of stars. It should be bright everywhere we look, whether it’s day or night.
Why is it dark?
Surprisingly, it wasn’t a scientist, but poet Edgar Allan Poe, to be the first one to propose a solution to this problem:
“Were the succession of stars endless, then the background of the sky would present us a uniform luminosity, like that displayed by the Galaxy–since there could be absolutely no point, in all that background, at which would not exist a star. The only mode, therefore, in which, under such a state of affairs, we could comprehend the voids which our telescopes find in innumerable directions, would be by supposing that the distance o[f] the invisible background [is] so immense that no ray from it has yet been able to reach us at all.”
-Eureka: A Prose Poem (1848)
Lord Kelvin published a paper in 1901 which provided mathematical backing to this same idea.
The universe IS completely bright, we just can’t see it yet. The light is on its way.
I couldn’t help but think about how often we look at our lives and ask the same question. Why it is dark? Where is God in this? It can be hard to remember in this fallen world, but the battle is already won. The light is already out there, and it’s coming for us soon.
“Now we see things imperfectly, like puzzling reflections in a mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity. All that I know now is partial and incomplete, but then I will know everything completely, just as God now knows me completely.” – 1 Corinthians 13:12 (NLT)
“No longer will there be any curse. The throne of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and his servants will serve him. They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads. There will be no more night. They will not need the light of a lamp or the light of the sun, for the Lord God will give them light. And they will reign for ever and ever.“ – Revelation 22:3-5