We’d been urged to make the arduous, twisty drive up to ‘Glacier Point’ in Yosemite National Park where, we were assured, it was a star-gazer’s dream. With little or no artificial light, the heavens would be bright with thousands of stars.
But things had dulled down as the day went by and the evening was overcast. In fairness, the panoramic sweep of mountains from the viewpoint was still majestic but, well, a little grey. We even felt a spit of rain and wondered about heading back down. But others had gathered, and seemed to be waiting in anticipation and so we hung about.
Then, just about ten minutes before eight, the sun appeared momentarily, below the clouds and just above the western horizon. Suddenly the valley was filled with fresh light and the mountains were bathed in a warm glow. People gasped in wonder and cameras started clicking. As if that weren’t enough, after the sun actually sank beneath the distant rim, the sky took on a range of amazing colours, red, purple, and blue, in what they told us was an ‘alpine glow’, and the distant mountain peaks shimmered in pink.
It was awesome!
We didn’t see many stars that night, but what we did see was more spectacular than we could have imagined.
And maybe there is a little lesson here in faith. Faith is not demanding the heavens to give us what we want, but waiting to see, and accepting with gratitude what the heavens give us.
The Psalmist writes: ‘I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in His word I put my hope.’ (Psalm 130 v 5)
As we look to the future we may feel eager to grab the opportunities, or daunted by the challenges, or perhaps a bit of both! But I’m encouraged by God’s Word and faithfulness to date, and can say with A W Tozer:
‘We may safely preach a friendly heaven.’
Let's pray, and trust, and wait and see what happens!