Day 7: A day of rest

So day 7 is a day late. I’ll still have an experiment for today, but as this 100-day project is work-related and I would still like to observe a Sabbath, I’ll be using the 7th day of every week to talk about what I’ve been observing, learning, processing, etc.

Let’s talk about some things I’ve learned in my pursuit of science.

Success in science is more about humility and perseverance, and less about perfectionism and intellectual prowess. When I say that I majored in molecular biology, many people reply, “You must be really smart,” which irritates me a bit. Sure, science comes pretty naturally to me, but I studied hard, and even in studying hard I almost didn’t pass Organic Chemistry and Cell Biology my sophomore year in college. Working toward my PhD has taught me that being conventionally “smart” (in the good-grades sense) only gets you so far. To do well in science, you have to be okay with failing 95% of the time, asking for help if you don’t know how to do something, and constant troubleshooting. My water polo coach in college used to say, “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result.” If you want improvement, then you have to be willing to change, ask for help, accept constructive criticism, and try something different.

There is no limit to what we can discover through science. Some people think that humanity is pretty much done discovering new things, that you have to be a genius to make new discoveries. But I say, answering one question always leads to another question. Even people who make huge discoveries will say that they happened to be in the right place at the right time. Plus, the world likes to throw new viruses, pathogens, diseases, etc. at us from time to time and we have to figure out what to do about it.

God is a scientist. Well, everything else too. But I identify with God as a scientist, for obvious reasons 🙂 I feel like Psalm 139:23-24 encapsulates this idea of God as a scientist:

Search me, God, and know my heart;
test me and know my anxious thoughts.
See if there is any offensive way in me,
and lead me in the way everlasting.

Searching, knowing, testing… sounds like what I do! What is a test, an experiment but an attempt to answer a question, to search and know? God tests us, God organizes our environment invites us to grow and be led by him through our circumstances and into a deeper relationship with him.

These are some of my musings, what do you think? Where do you find God in your place of work?

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