DNA, life, and our eternal coding


The other day I spent some time updating my “profile” on some site that carries my work. It’s hard to keep everything current, and I noticed this particular bio still featured our residency as Florida, Andrew and Alicia as living in Italy, Naomi and Craig in Connecticut, and no sign of my latest book, Pilgrim in Progress.

My intention was to compose a multi-use template, something I can drop in anywhere – pre-packaged – as the need arises. But then I realize that my story is always in flux, and there really is no “cut-and-dried,” “one-size-fits-all” Derek. And the understanding gives me pause.

I was filling out the section on, “interests” when it hit me. Where do I focus my attention? Does the way I spend my time define who I am? Or do my aspirations – realized or otherwise – tell a story that’s more true? Do we spend a lifetime discovering who we really are… or do we spend all these decades honing and fine-tuning what is true? Is it possible to write anything at all that tells the real story?

NATURE vs NURTURE: I guess all I’m doing here is thinking about the classic “nature versus nurture” puzzle. But at the same time I believe “who we are” is a far more complex idea. We are flesh and blood people, living in a most marvelous world; yet we are also spiritual beings, and I’m not sure if that part of our nature is written into our DNA, or if it involves a coding beyond the reach of mortality to uncover?

Jesus alluded to this mystery many times, and this morning I found myself musing over his words from Matthew, when the legalists tried to trip him up over “one man, one woman” and marriage: Jesus said, “Is not this the reason you are wrong, that you know neither the scriptures nor the power of God? For when they rise from the dead, they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels in heaven…” – Mark 12:18-27

Or, “You’re asking the wrong questions! We will move from this life into eternity, yes, but there are truths and understandings that remain a mystery. We read the scriptures, yet we try to fit them into our constricted vision; we believe in God, but we don’t begin to grasp God’s sovereignty, God’s power, or the reach of God’s love.”

Look at the photograph I pasted in, above. It’s the same view I have looked at a dozen times a day for the past 29 months; yet I have never seen it that way before yesterday evening; not remotely. Is it the same? Is it just my viewpoint that has changed? How do we measure immutability? What if “fixed points” are only fixed points in our limited understanding?

IMG_5484But I digress from the original few paragraphs, and the “who am I” question – or maybe not! I am the same person who has been kicking around now for almost six decades. But I am still learning who that is, and I am also learning to tip the balance of the equation more toward my spiritual self, and so I am learning more about who I am by spending more and more time in the presence of my Creator.

Jesus is not only teaching me who I can be, in him, he’s also teaching me who I already am – from the foundations if time – and into the limitless possibilities of eternity.



  1. One of my yoga teachers says “move your mat and you change your life”. I’ve decided to make 2016 the year of changing perspectives so your post really resonated with me. My change for January was to be on foot. I am walking everywhere except to work. I live in Sandy Springs, Ga and have for most of my life. Being on foot has shown me parts of this suburb of Atlanta that I have only driven mindlessly past. It has also really increased my appreciation for my body which I’m sorry to say I have mostly been either unaware of or disparaging of the extra pounds I carry around.
    All the best and thanks again for your words.


  2. Hi Derek,

    One, I want to say that I really enjoy your post. I appreciate the fact that you allow the Holy Spirit to continually use you and provide spiritual guidance to other members in the body of Christ. Secondly, I have found that the more that we allow ourselves to follow the Holy Spirit the more that he reveals things to us that may have been right in front of us the entire time. This is one of the wonderful things that I love about being a follower of Christ. He is always “new” and revolutionary to us.

    Peace and Blessings,


    Liked by 1 person

  3. Very good question to ponder. Is it in the blood? I personally think that it is in the DNA, because all things have instructions. A map, the road or path it must follow. John the Baptist, had said it quite well. The light came into the world with Man, key here is that the man comprehended it Not. So then while we were Yet in the womb, He had laid the foundation, Christ the light. To be the King over the earth, we are the earth, recall that, you are dust and Unto it you shall remain. He was in the world, and the world knew Him Not. All things were made by Him and for Him. All things come by the blood . for There are three that bare record in Heaven, Father,Word,Holy ghost, and then three in the earth that bare witness, Spirit, water, blood. I do recall that I have come through the water and the blood and definitely the Spirit, which is the breath of life.

    Nice message, lots to ponder, thought provoking!


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