John Glenn and Neil Armstrong are famous names in America’s space program. Glenn was the first man to orbit the earth and Armstrong was the first man to step on the moon.
But behind their celebrity were NASA’s “human computers.” It seems almost impossible, but in an age before computers, scientists, engineers, and mathematicians used a slide rule to send men to the moon.
During a recent tour of the Johnson Space Center in Houston, I heard a tour guide describe how NASA workers resisted the first small, handheld computers issued at the space center. They were known to slip them in their desk drawers or use them as paper weights. Instead, they chose to pull out their trusty slide rules and rely on their brainpower.
Sometimes I think that’s what we ought to do as Christians. We need to go back to our slide rules, so to speak, and resist some of the latest trends. When we neglect the basics of our Christian faith, we lose our way.
We need to remember that no amount of book-buying, theological debates, conferences, or Bible studies can replace reading and studying the Bible for ourselves. We are transformed when we can say about the Scriptures, “Then I ate it, and it was in my mouth as sweet as honey” (Ezekiel 3:2-3). When we digest them, the Scriptures will call us to love God and others, to live holy lives, and to place our faith and assurance in Christ alone.
When my daughters were teenagers, the Christian group 4Him released a song that delivered a message I still need to hear today:
“We need to get back
To the basics of life
A heart that is pure
And a love that is blind
A faith that is fervently
Grounded in Christ
The hope that endures for all times
These are the basics
We need to get back
To the basics of life.”
How might God be prompting you to get ‘back to the basics’ of your faith in this current season?