Jakey sat on the floor working on a Lego project while White watched a discussion on TV. According to Jakey, it was one of those boring shows his Gramp often watched on one of those stupid news channels where people just talked and talked, usually about boring things.
This particular segment pitted an atheist against a believer; their topic: the existence of God. Jakey couldn't avoid hearing some of the talk.
"I believe in science and logic, not the supernatural and fairy tales," the woman said. She sounded angry. "Not the musings of some old man now dead for centuries," referring to the words of Paul her counterpart had just quoted from the Bible book called Ephesians.
"Gramp, why does that lady not believe in God?" Jakey asked. He topped off a corner of his Lego walls with a parapet, and leaned back to consider it.
"Whazzat?" White asked, coming back from a semi-doze.
"That lady on the TV, she said she thinks believing in God is stupid, that science is what's real. What does that mean?"
"Well…" White cleared his throat, as much to jump start his mind as to get his voice box working, and he sat up straighter. "Some folks claim they can't see the evidence of God, so they don't think he exists. But to believe in God you've got to go beyond what you see."
"How?" Jakey asked.
"By having faith, just knowing in your heart that it's true. But, you see, that's what that woman there is arguing about. Science is all about proving things, it's about gathering up evidence to explain how things work and why things exist."
"What's wrong with that?"
"Well, nothing. That's one of the best things about being a human being – having the ability to observe what's going on around us and then having the intelligence to figure it all out."
"Can't we do that with God, too?"
"I believe we can," White said, getting up from his chair and walking to a bookcase. He scanned the shelves for a few seconds; then pulled out a volume and laid it on the coffee table where he opened it and started leafing.
"You learned about cells yet?" White asked.
"Then you know every living thing is made up of cells, usually trillions of 'em."
"Is that more than a bazillion?"
"Close. But there's an amazing thing inside each one of those cells." White stopped on an open page and tapped it with his finger. "Ah, here it is."
Jakey followed his gramp's tapping finger on the book page. He saw a funny looking spiraling ladder with red sides and blue rungs. "What's that?" he asked.
"That's what they call a double helix, it's a strand of something called DNA…well, it's not an actual picture of a DNA strand, just an artist's idea of what one looks like. Anyway, a string of this stuff, about five feet long, is wound up real tight and stuffed in every one of your cells."
"What's it do?"
"It doesn't actually do anything. It's like an enormous library, a big data bank. The information it holds instructs the cell on how to build little machines that will do something, anything any particular cell in that living thing needs doing. A lot of people, even a lot of important scientists, believe that proves God exists."
Jakey thought about that for a minute, scrunching up his brow. "I don't get it."
White closed the big textbook and held it up. "What had to happen before I could show you the information in this book?"
"Someone had to make the book," Jakey said.
"Yes," White said. "But even before that."
"Someone had to write it."
"That's right. Someone had to think up the information, and then put it together in a sequence of words we could understand.
"Now," White continued. "Do you think it could've written itself?"
"That's a smart answer, but there're some people, people who have completed a whole lot of schooling, and who we'd consider very, very smart, who think all the information in a strand of DNA could self-assemble, could randomly come together, given enough time."
"Yeah, but here's the thing. The information in a strand of DNA is so complex that other very smart people, people who know a lot about numbers, say the likelihood of that big library falling into place by itself is pretty much impossible. They figured for that to happen, it would take more time than the universe is old."
"So here's what I'm trying to show you. Every cell in your body has DNA. Science has discovered and proven that DNA is basically a warehouse of information. Information doesn't just pop up out of nowhere, it has to be created, and the creation of information suggests an intelligent designer."
"Is that God?" Jakey asked.
"I believe it is," White answered.
"Hmm. Somebody should give that woman on TV this information," Jakey said, returning to his Legos. "Then maybe she wouldn't be so mad."