Saturday, April 9, 2016

Time and Space - Greenwich

Yesterday, while still on holiday in London, we took a city river cruise down the Thames to Greenwich.  This is 0 longitude, the prime meridian.  At the observatory we learned of the importance of finding an accurate way to keep time at sea, so that sailors could accurately determine their position and avoid shipwreck.

Greenwich Time
I was impressed by the passion of those early scientists and astronomers who dedicated their lives to the quest. One man, John Harrison took four attempts over decades before he developed a clock that was accurate at sea. In the 1700s sea traffic ruled. Safe navigation was vital if lives were to be saved and the world explored. Greenwich has a museum which celebrates the work that went into developing accurate timepieces.

This made me think about the things that we can achieve if we are passionate and committed to the long haul, even when things don't work out at first.  Harrison learnt from his failures and tried again.  Putting a man on the moon took similar commitment and focus.

This has encouraged me in one of my quests for 2016 which is to explore the role of passion in aiding our motivation and perseverance/endurance.  From my Christian perspective the saving of lives is ultimately achieved as people know where they are in Christ for eternity, not just knowing where they are in time and in longitude. How passionate are we about this work and what resources are we prepared to commit?
The Prime Meridian - 0 deg longitude

This also had me reflecting on finding our place in the world. Knowing that I have Christ to trust in is my Harrison chronometer. That wherever I am I know that I am a child of God, secure for eternity.

Martin and Sue.

1 comment:

Sam Macaulay said...

This is awesome! Loved reading your thoughts about passion and purpose in this blog, they resonate with some of my own I've had while beginning my PhD studies recently.