I praise you because you made me in an amazing and wonderful way. What you have done is wonderful. I know this very well.
-- Psalm 139:14
Here's a mind-boggling meteorological concept that many people accept as gospel:
Since the beginning of time, every snowflake that has ever fallen is unique. Each one is different with a one-of-a-kind design.
This raises a good question: Out of the trillions of snowflakes that have formed over the centuries, who can prove that one from an 1896 Virginia flurry isn't the twin of another from a New York blizzard two centuries earlier?
There's really no way to know for sure. And in fact, it turns out that snowflakes aren't quite so different after all. A December 2014 article on the Smithsonian.com website reports that there are just 39 types of solid precipitation, and snowflakes fall in one of only 35 shapes. A Vox.com article further explains that certain flakes tend to occur at particular temperatures, humidities and even locations.
Although there could have been two (or maybe even billions) of duplicate snowflakes over the years, there's no question that God has made every human being unique and in His own image. Moreover, we are both loved and precious in His sight.
"Two sparrows cost only a penny, but not even one of them can die without your Father's knowing it," Jesus assured His followers. "God even knows how many hairs are on your head. So don't be afraid. You are worth much more than many sparrows."
God--the most powerful and loving Presence in the universe--bought you and me at an incredible price: the life of His Son. Since we can never repay what we rightfully owe for all the bad decisions, broken relationships and damage we've wrought throughout our lives, Jesus paid it Himself by dying in our place on a cross between two common criminals. He didn't deserve to be there. But God loves us so much that He went to extraordinary lengths so that we can be with Him forever.
"If any of you has 100 sheep, and one of them gets lost, what will you do? Won't you leave the 99 in the field and go look for the lost sheep until you find it," Jesus asks in Luke 15. "And when you find it, you will be so glad that you will put it on your shoulder and carry it home. Then you will call in your friends and neighbors and say, 'Let's celebrate! I've found my lost sheep.'"
Yes, God is willing to do whatever it takes to bring you and me home. With the hefty price of our sin paid long ago, the only thing that's left for us is to accept His free gift...and then live out our lives accordingly to show a skeptical world that we're truly one of a kind.