New York Times Bestselling Author Andy Andrews wrote a little book titled The Butterfly Effect: How Your Life Matters. It begins like this:
In 1963 Edward Lorenz presented a hypothesis to the New York Academy of Science. His theory, stated simply, was this: A butterfly could flap its wings and set molecules of air in motion, which would move over other molecules of air, in turn moving more molecules of air, eventually capable of starting a hurricane on the other side of the planet. Lorenz and his ideas were literally laughed out of the conference . . . So imagine the scientific community’s shock and surprise when, more than thirty years after the possibility was introduced, physics professors working from colleges and universities worldwide came to the conclusion that the butterfly effect was authentic, accurate, and viable. Soon after, it was accorded the status of a ‘law.’ Now know as The Law of Sensitive Dependence Upon Initial Conditions, this principle has proven to be a force encompassing more than mere butterfly wings… (Andrews)
So starts Andy’s book. I was reminded of this introduction as I was sitting in church this Sunday; yes, this Sunday. It happens to be a church that three Adventist ladies started back in 1908, when they saw a need and began to flap their wings. The story goes like this. These three ladies (one of whom was the Adventist pastor’s wife) realized that the non-Adventist children of College View had no place to go to church. So because the need to tell these children about God’s love superseded the need to convert them to Adventism, these women started a Sunday School on Sunday mornings. The kids came, and soon their parents came. Only a few years later a pastor moved into town, and the church was organized as a nondenominational Sunday church. Those same ladies then enlisted their husbands and helped build a church for that new congregation. The church was originally called Union Church (1911), but it has since been renamed several times: College View Church, College View Presbyterian Church (1953), and Southeast Presbyterian Church (1973). In 1975, all the Presbyterian congregations of Lincoln “loaned” elders to form a new congregation in south Lincoln, called Southern Hills Presbyterian Church. The two congregations decided to merge in 1983; this leads us to the present church, Southern Heights Presbyterian, found at 40th & Old Cheney.
Because of the commitment of those three ladies to be sure that the neighborhood kids could know about God’s love, hundreds of lives have been touched in our city. So many big things in life start with just a little flap of the wings. It always amazes me in this upside down, divinely unconventional kingdom of His that God has used–and continues to use–the littlest actions to make big differences.
Go ahead. Flap your wings.
Photo credit: Julie Escobar