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How DID the good Lord???

Have you ever heard of Rien Poortvliet, an artist from the Netherlands? His “Noah’s Ark” is a huge, coffee-table type book that holds his sketches and paintings, complete with imaginings about what it must have been like to build, load, and board the ark–and then to wait. His artwork is beautiful, but to me, his musings (in graceful, casual calligraphy) are even better because they show such appreciation for God’s creativity.

But life gets so busy, and the book sits on the table and gathers dust. Months go by. I read everything under the sun except Poortvliet’s book, and then one night it seems to call my name and I pick it up. I open to a picture of a few birds, an elephant, and a detail of elephant’s skin that looks rather like a rough fingerprint–and at the top of the page, Poortvliet’s exuberant comment: “How did the good Lord come up with all this!!!!”

A few pages later, this: “An ordinary pheasant, an ordinary sleeping dog. What a pity they do not amaze us. They are so marvelously fashioned.”

Then his closing comment: “From the beginning I was aiming at a heartfelt hymn of praise. Honor to whom honor is due! And why should I try to find other words for this than those of Psalm 104?” The book ends with the complete text of the Psalm.

Some libraries carry this book–that’s where I first found it. If you ever have a chance, check it out. Poortvliet’s joy and excitement really are a hymn of praise.

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