Our ship departed from Houston, Texas, and since neither Kelly nor I had ever done any sightseeing there, we decided to go a couple days early and check it out. We discovered they have a museum district downtown, which makes it easy to visit several places without a lot of driving or expense for transportation.

At the Fine Arts Museum we marveled at the talent and inspiration of artists over centuries of time. The subject matter ranged as much as the media and message of each piece. Of course, we had a few favorites. Since we’re studying Exodus in Sunday school, we especially enjoyed the Egyptian artifacts which reveal the world the Israelites lived in during their 430 years of slavery. I gravitated toward tender portrayals of love and personal epiphanies in many of the works.

The weather was not as warm as we expected the day we went to the zoo, but the sun was out and the animals were active. The giraffes were especially entertaining. We’re not sure if these two were sparring for fun or in actual combat, but they continued to bash each other, neck to neck, even as we moved on. Every time we look at the magnificence, variety, and even humor of the animal kingdom, it confirms our belief that creation didn’t appear by accident or evolution, but by intelligent design. By a Designer who loves and cares for His creations.

An animal of dubious lineage

Visiting the Holocaust Museum was sobering and sickening, yet a revelation I believe every person should experience in their lifetime. The tragedy is that we didn’t learn from the horror and atrocities committed against the Jews, Christians, elderly, mentally handicapped, and others deemed unfit to live by Hitler and his followers. The slaughter and persecution of one race or religion against another has persisted since the beginning of time, and continues even now around the globe.
When will we realize we’re all precious and beloved people formed by the hand of God? He made us to love Him and each other. Instead of beating others down because they are different from us, we should value the uniqueness of culture and appearance, and help others thrive and bring glory to God.

After two days in Houston, our brains and hearts were full. We saw the works of our awesome Creator God, the masterpieces of men and women made in His image, as well as the propensity we have for ignorance, ugliness, and appalling cruelty. I left with a renewed desire to declare the value of allhuman life and cheer for those who stand bravely against evil that seeks to kill others – body and soul.
Next week, I hope you’ll join our adventure as we board the cruise ship headed for the Mexican Caribbean.