Could this be Nessie?

hump in water
Could this be Nessie? (Courtesy of Daily Record)

Could this be Nessie? Do we finally have photographic evidence of the existence of the Loch Ness monster? A photograph taken by long-time Nessie watcher George Edwards, 60, appears to show a large hump moving in the water. It was taken nine months ago at 9:00am on 2nd November 2011. Mr. Edwards said he been watching it for five to ten minutes as it moved slowly up the loch towards Urquhart Castle before slowly sinking beneath the water. He described it as “a dark grey colour” and “quite a fair way from the boat, probably about half a mile away.”

So why was the photograph not released until now? Mr Edwards explained: “I did not want to mention my sighting until I was sure I had not photographed a log or something inanimate in the water. I have friends in the USA who have friends in the military. They had my photo analysed and they have no doubt that I photographed an animate object in the water.”

One of the most likely explanations for monster sightings in Loch Ness is the existence of a family of plesiosaurs. More dramatic plesiosaur sightings have been recorded, but not verified, in other parts of the world, although the most famous prehistoric creature to have been found alive so far is probably the coelacanth. The first modern sighting of this ancient fish was in 1938, but individual specimens have been seen since, some of the most recent during an expedition off Sulawesi Island by a Japanese team in 2009.

Even so, many people are sceptical about the idea of a Loch Ness Monster, but proving it doesn’t exist is almost as hard as proving that there is no God. Because of its great depth, Loch Ness is the largest lake by volume in the UK. Searching this vast body of water to show that there are no prehistoric creatures hiding in its depths is almost impossible. Similarly the non-existence of God is not something that can be proved. In 2009 London buses carried atheistic advertisements stating “There’s probably no God …” Writing in the Guardian newspaper in October 2008, Ariane Sherine, the campaign’s creator, admitted that “it’s impossible to prove that God doesn’t exist.” Not one of us can claim to know everything there is to know. Who, for instance, knows exactly how many pebbles there are on Brighton beach? If there are gaps in our knowledge, how do we know that God is not in the gaps? In fact millions around the world today claim to know God personally, and to have experienced His touch upon their lives.

Maybe it’s not where you look that counts, but how you look, for God is waiting to be found. As God said through the prophet Jeremiah: “‘You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you,’ declares the Lord.” (Jeremiah 29:13-14)

In hot pursuit

Bradley Wiggins
Bradley_Wiggins (courtesy of Wikimedia Commons)

Sporting fervour has been at its height in the UK over recent days, and not just because of the coming Olympics. The triumph of Great Britain’s Bradley Wiggins and Chris Froome caught the nation’s attention as the two cyclists powered to victory in France’s premier sporting event, the Tour de France. Wiggins’ success is a tribute to his hard work and sportsmanship. This year Wiggins became the first person ever to win the Paris-Nice, the Tour de Romandie, the Critérium du Dauphiné and the Tour de France in a single season. His next challenge is, of course, riding for Great Britain at the London Olympics, but there is one Olympic cycling event that he won’t be able to take part in, and that is the 4km individual pursuit, an event in which he won gold in Beijing in 2008. Following a decision by the International Olympic Committee in December 2009, the individual pursuit has been excluded from London 2012 and from future games.

The individual pursuit consists of two cyclists starting on opposite sides of the track at the same time, and aiming to complete the distance in the fastest time. In so doing the two riders pursue each other, and if one rider manages to catch the other, he or she is declared the winner.

The sense of being pursued is not just confined to cyclists however, whether it’s a celebrity pursued by their fans, a citizen by “the taxman” or a rogue trader by their customers many have undergone what can be an uncomfortable experience. On her website, EveryStudent.Com, Marilyn Adamson admits to being pursued by God. A one-time atheist, Marilyn admits that the God question deeply troubled her. She wanted to disprove God’s existence once and for all, and thereby gain peace of mind, but she eventually came to realise “that the reason the topic of God weighed so heavily on my mind, was because God was pressing the issue.” She continues, “It was as if I couldn’t escape thinking about the possibility of God. In fact, the day I chose to acknowledge God’s existence, my prayer began with, “Ok, you win…” It might be that the underlying reason atheists are bothered by people believing in God is because God is actively pursuing them.”

It is difficult to escape the possibility or the evidence of a Creator. We are surrounded with natural beauty, power and grandeur. In the Greek scriptures we read, “since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities – his eternal power and divine nature – have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made …” (Romans 1:20)

We are relational beings, we need human contact. So it is not surprising to think that the One who designed us is also relational, and has made us precisely so that we might know him. In the 1st Century Yeshua (Jesus) declared that we were made for a relationship with the Divine, “Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Yeshua the Messiah, whom you have sent.” (John 17:3)

Are you being pursued by your Creator?