Sea Turtles And God

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom (Psalm 111:10, ESV).

My wife and I recently walked along a beach at night. We came upon a man with a white bucket filled with hatchling sea turtles. Several children were gathered around him, and they were releasing the turtles into the sea.

The man gave my wife and me a few turtles to release. When we placed the hatchlings into the water, their flippers flapped like they were connected to energizer batteries, and off they zipped into the waves.

The turtles that my wife and I released, assuming they were females – if they survive birds, struggles with seaweed, and others happy to feed on them – will return to the same beach (often very close to their original nest) to lay another batch of eggs.

They will return 20 to 25 years from now.

I don’t know about you, but I don’t remember exactly where I was 20 to 25 years ago. In fact, I’m getting old enough that I must get out a calculator to figure out how old I was 20 to 25 years ago.

Believing in God isn’t a sure thing. The resurrection can’t be proven like 2 + 2 = 4. In all things, God requires faith. 

However, God leaves indicators of His existence. They are everywhere in nature. What, in atheist evolution, can explain a turtle returning to the same place of birth to lay the next generation of eggs?

There is an article in the online National Geographic that explains it . . .

The turtles . . . navigate at sea by sensing the invisible lines of the magnetic field, similar to how sailors use latitude and longitude . . .  each part of the coastline has its own magnetic signature.

Science has it figured out but many scientists stop there. Perhaps thinking, “Now we know!” Not seeing another indicator of intricate design as evidence for God. Not understanding that a “magnetic” internal compass in a hatchling sea turtle can only be explained by . . .

In the beginning, God created.

Psalm 111 says that “fear” is the beginning of wisdom.

The Hebrew word for “fear” indicates reverence. Those with respect for God will see the signposts, the indicators of design throughout nature.

These indicators stack up – language, how your hand works, your ability to think of the concept of God, DNA, the stars – and a baby Hawksbill sea turtle.

I’ve always considered “fear” to be the first sign of faith.

Sensing a presence in nature, awareness of our inadequacy, and a search for what can’t be seen – are the first steps of belief. This fear enables humility in our wisdom allowing us to see signposts leading to God.

Some consider a sea turtle and think, “The result of time plus chance equals evolution; no need to involve the naïve idea of God.”

But when my wife and I released our turtles, we were thankful for the greatness of God.

Blog note: There are four types of sea turtles that lay eggs on the beach where we were walking. They are the Hawksbill sea turtle, the Loggerhead sea turtle, the Meso-American river turtle, and the Leatherback turtle. I believe this is a Hawksbill indicated by its bluish color and the little “hawk” beak-like mouth.