Jim White was riding the range near sunset when he saw what appeared to be a cloud of smoke rising from the ground. Puzzled, he watched the «smoke» disappear into the hot June night. The next evening, he saw the cloud again and decided to investigate. The third evening he went to where he thought the smoke had come from and found nothing but a hole in the ground. So, he sat and waited for nightfall.
Sure enough, from the hole poured the smoke like cloud—a cloud composed of millions of bats that emerged at dusk to hunt. How could they have all come from that hole in the ground? Jim White didn’t tell the other cowboys what he had seen because he knew they wouldn’t believe him. Instead, he built a ladder out of mesquite sticks, wire, and rope to use to lower himself into the pit.
The pit led to a large cavern whose floor was covered with mounds of bat dropping. Until his lantern ran out of kerosene, Jim explored passages and discovered fantastic stone formations. He went back to the cave many times and finally convinced his skeptical friends of his amazing discovery. Twenty-two years later, in 1923, the government declared Jim’s cave—Carlsbad Caverns—a national monument.
Caves all over the world are filled with beautiful, mysterious formations. But God didn’t create caves just for people to admire. They provide a unique environment for many plants, animals, and organisms that can survive only there. Caves also provide vital channels for conducting groundwater.
God formed every creation to serve a purpose—including you and me.