By Pastor Doug Cox
Ephesians 5:20 tells us to “…give thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Most of us have a list we could easily go through of things we are thankful for. The sacrifice Jesus made for us, eternal life, our loved ones, our country, our homes, and so on, but when was the last time you looked at your glass of ice tea and said thanks for the ice cubes.
Until a few months ago, I never gave much thought to how miraculous water is. Of course, everyone knows we can’t survive without it, but because we have a surplus of water, we mostly take it for granted, let alone give thanks for it. Recently, while reading a book titled “Is Atheism Dead” I read a couple of pages talking about the properties of water. I had no idea the properties of water are almost miraculous.
Of course, I knew that water freezes at 32 degrees and floats. I have watched water stand taller than the top of a glass before it spills over the side but never thought much about it. I didn’t know that water was classified as the “universal solvent” and is capable of carrying in it both dissolved and undissolved minerals. I learned that the way water responds to our climate goes against science. Szent-Gyorgi says “for a molecule its size, water should boil at 32 degrees.” Oh, how I wish that were true when I’m out there scraping the ice off my windshield in freezing temperatures.
Most substances get denser and heavier when they cool and therefore sink, but not water. Solid water, ice is less dense than liquid. The warmer the water the less dense it is and the colder the water gets the more dense and heavy it becomes. This process holds true until 39 degrees. At 39 degrees the process suddenly reverses the colder it gets. At 32 degrees water turns to ice and is 9 percent less dense than liquid water and therefore floats.
These miraculous properties are what make water different and are the reason our planet can sustain life. If water didn’t float the lakes would freeze from the bottom up and kill all life in them. But because ice floats on the top, it insulates the water below and keeps it from freezing below, therefore we can have fish tacos.
That’s just part of this whole reason to give thanks. Water is also purified when it evaporates. That could be a problem if God hadn’t engineered a way to get it back down to earth. The higher in the atmosphere you go the colder it gets and when it gets cold enough for condensation to happen, put on your raincoat, or get our your snow shovel. The point is water is here to stay because God made it that way. Think about that and give thanks to God next time you ask for ice in your water.