The Faith to Move Mountains
by Rev. Sherard Edington
(The following is Sherard’s Worship Wilson column for the Wilson Post published October 27, 2022.)
On September 26—just a month ago—NASA did something extraordinary. They intentionally crashed a spacecraft into an asteroid. They didn’t do this to be wasteful. It was an experiment to see if it was possible to shift an asteroid out of its orbit.
To be clear, Earth is in no danger of being struck by any asteroids. However, if we should discover that we are on a collision course with some heavenly body, NASA wanted to be ready.
Their proposal was the DART mission (Dual Asteroid Redirection Test) to see if they could successfully nudge an asteroid and change its trajectory. While nuclear bombs make for good movies, in real life it’s not a great idea because blowing up an asteroid creates a lot of little fragment asteroids coming at you. It’s best to keep your asteroid in one piece and simply elbow it out of the way. The DART mission was designed to see if we could do just that, to see if we could alter the trajectory of a small asteroid.
This is the first mission of NASA’s planetary defense program.
What amazes me is not that they pulled it off, but at the faith required to even conceive of such an endeavor. And by faith, I mean the faith that the engineers and scientists had in themselves, their abilities, their experience, their knowledge, and their science. They believed in their proposal. After all, their plan was to launch a rocket that would deploy a spacecraft that would travel 7 million miles at 3.8 miles per second to impact a rock only 500 feet wide orbiting a larger rock. It seems impossible and yet they had faith.
My question for you is this: What if we, as Christians, placed that same level of faith, not in ourselves, but in God? What could we accomplish?
Faith is a gift from God. Faith offers us the connection to God that transforms our lives. Faith is not simply believing in God. Faith is the certainty that God is always with us, that God loves us and cares for us. As we read in the book of Hebrews, “Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” I believe in God, but more than that, I have faith that God is with me.
Jesus tells his disciples that if they have faith in even the tiniest amount, they can accomplish miracles. “If you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.”
When we have faith, we can do anything. We can move mountains on earth and even mountains in space.
Sherard Edington has served as pastor of First Presbyterian Church in Lebanon for 11 years. Worship Wilson is a weekly column written by pastors and people of faith.