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world in God's hand 750pb

7 billion people, and each one special to God   

Ian Boughton has been contemplating the enormity of the world population, and marvels that God knows us all by name.

I have always had a problem with the concept of ‘scale’, with regard to faith. 
I am greatly reassured by the idea of a supreme father who knows all of us, and who is familiar with my individual failings, numerous and embarrassing though they may be... but I stumble at the thought that there are so many of us on this planet.   Seven-point-seven billion, as of today – seven thousand million.
I just can’t imagine how God can find me in his address book at all.  Even if he subcontracted my pastoral care to a guardian angel (a concept I also love!) that poor overworked angel must have thousands to watch over. I just can’t grasp it.
Last week my computer storage disk blew up.  This is a gadget about eight inches by four, which plugs into my PC and held 70Gb (seventy gigabytes!) of data from my working life, fifty-two years as a writer, my musical career, personal life and family pictures, and so on.  All gone in a flash, bang.
A ‘data recovery’ business in the Midlands said they could try and recover some of this, and that they would return any saved data to me on a memory stick – that’s a little thing about half the size of my thumb, which sticks into the side of my PC.   And they did – 70Gb of incredibly complex data on a thing half the size of my thumb.
Thousands of angels on a pinhead, I thought.
Suddenly I seem closer to resolving my problem of scale!

Image by Okan Caliskan from


Ian Boughton 750CFIan Boughton is a musician and author and retired journalist who lives in Dilham in Norfolk. His latest book is “Are You With the Band?”  

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Network Norwich and Norfolk > People > Opinion > 7 billion people, and each one special to God

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