Friday, April 21, 2006

Love and Death

Yesterday, folk on a whale watch on the Condor Express out of Santa Barbara witnessed and sort of participated in a dramatic and brutal event. A mother gray whale and her calf were attacked by a pod of orca.

Presumably the mother had options. Gray whales dive as deep as 1000 feet while reports of Orca going deeper than 100 are very rare. None of the sites I could find thought they ever go deeper than 300 feet. The mother probably could have escaped... but to do so would have left the calf defenseless. Instead she pressed the calf up against the boat, using the boat to shield it from one side and her body to shield from the other.

It was a futile effort. The orca attacked for the better part of the day and eventually killed both the mother and the calf. My gut says that she had to know that would be the case - whales are smart animals - but she didn't want the infant to die knowing it had been abandoned by its mother.

Lot's to think about... I'm guessing that after witnessing that, most of the passengers will never go on a whale watch again. But given that it is Eastertide, it got me thinking about love and sacrifice.

Romans 5:6-8 (MsgB)
Christ arrives right on time to make this happen. He didn't, and doesn't, wait for us to get ready. He presented himself for this sacrificial death when we were far too weak and rebellious to do anything to get ourselves ready. And even if we hadn't been so weak, we wouldn't have known what to do anyway. [7] We can understand someone dying for a person worth dying for, and we can understand how someone good and noble could inspire us to selfless sacrifice. [8] But God put his love on the line for us by offering his Son in sacrificial death while we were of no use whatever to him.


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