Many of you have probably seem all the news about the problem with finding Valentine’s most popular candy…NECCO’s Valentine wafers with conversation messages on them. (As you can see from the title picture…NECCO has kept up with technology…encompassing ‘tech talk’ in love expressions on their Valentine wafers…until this year.)
The historic candy maker (which stands for New England Confectionery Company) had been in operation since 1847 and was the oldest continuously running candy company in America. Less than two weeks from Valentine’s Day, we’re facing a mild catastrophe: We will not be telling each other “I Love You” or “Fax Me” or “LOL” with Sweethearts conversation hearts this year. There will simply be none for sale anywhere in 2019.
The new company, who bought out NECCO simply didn’t have time this year to produce the annual 8 billion wafers…but promises they will return next year.
Actually, however, the post today is not about valentine candy…no matter how good it is and how much we will miss it. It is about a “God shaped vacuum that resides in the heart of every person”…at least according to mathematician, physicist, and religious philosopher Blaise Pascal.
Pascal was born in France in 1623 and died in 1662 at the young age of 39. His father, a judge and tax collector kept his frail son at home to educate him.
He believed in only educating Blaise in the classics…Greek and Latin…he was forbidden to study math…which meant, of course, that is all he wanted to study.
At 12 he found a geometry book and after reading for a few minutes created his own proposition that the sum of a triangle is equal to 2 right angles. His father, realizing his son was a child prodigy…gave in to his son’s interest in geometry.
By 16 he had written several essays and treatises on geometric theories, analytical geometry and physics. He made important contributions to geometry, calculus, and helped develop the theory of probability. Pascal’s law is the basis for hydraulic operations. At l9, he invented the world’s first mechanical calculator. The computer language known as PASCAL was named after him.
Then, for no apparent reason, he abandoned mathematics to pursue religion and to “contemplate the greatness and misery of man.”
It was during this time as he searched and struggled to find his own meaning of life and religious beliefs that he had a near-death accident. His two horses and carriage got away from him and went over the side of a bridge (over the Seine) almost taking him with them… but, at the last minute, he managed to escape and jump onto a busy street thus saving himself.
“That night he experienced a Christian conversion that would cause his outstanding scientific work to take second place in his pursuits. Light flooded his room. He recognized Jesus as the Word. For the rest of his life Pascal carried around a piece of parchment sewn into his coat in front of his heart describing the accident. He also included and inscribed these ecstatic phrases:
“God of Abraham, God of Isaac, God of Jacob, not of the philosophers and scholars…Joy, joy, joy, tears of joy…’This is life eternal that they might know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.’ Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ…May I not fall from him forever…I will not forget your word. Amen.”
(Source: Blaise Pascal’s Conversion: Diana Severance, PH.D Edited by Dan Graves, MSL.)
Pascal wrote “There is a God-shaped vacuum in the heart of every person, and it can never be filled by any created thing. It can only be filled by God, made known through Jesus Christ.”
Don’t we all see what happens when people try to fill that sacred vacuum with any man-made created thing…if we try to fill it with drugs or alcohol, jealousy or hatred, envy, self-arrogance, money, possessions, apathy, ungratefulness or greed. The list could go on and on.
People fill this God-given sacred heart vacuum expecting much and receiving nothing…and we can’t figure out why?
So until tomorrow…Let us remember God that “things” can never take the place of love…”things” can never take Your Place.
“Today is my favorite day” Winnie the Pooh
I know this tree-like plant looks really pretty so I took a picture before Luke cut it down ..he thinks it is called a ‘Prickly Something” …he sees them a lot in his work in forests and clearances. Even though the leaves are beautiful…the thorns that protrude from the stems are so long they are scary. It had to come down…it was potentially dangerous for the grandchildren who might be playing or running close by.