While many Americans celebrated or cursed April 15th due to it’s eponymous moniker of Tax Day, April 15th also brought with it something quite extraordinary. If one had but glanced up from their tax software, or the pale glow of their television, and walked outside just a bit after the sun had slipped from the sky, they would have beheld a sight with an embarrassment of celestial riches.
Sliding up above the horizon was a barely waning moon, turning blood red in a full lunar eclipse. Mars throwing off sparkling pink points of light just above it. Just Southwest of Mars and the Moon’s red rhapsody sat Saturn, glowering in it’s rotund and ponderous size, seemingly casting shadows on all the stars unfortunate enough to share it’s view.
If one had kept turning their heads further south passing their gaze through the Milky Way, they would have found the glimmering firebrand Venus. And sitting in the west, the king of the planets, flanked by the solar siblings Castor and Pollux, is Jupiter.
With the sky awash in this grandeur, it is easy to be drawn into this great expanse and become keenly aware that one’s own physical, emotional and spiritual space in this universe occupies almost no space at all. And that would be all too easy to do, but for two incredible facts.
Connected to the Heavens
The first of which is that we are so deeply connected to the heavens. The carbon, and hydrogen and iron inside of each one of us that knits our bodies together is also present in each of the pinpoints on that celestial quilt. The stuff of stars is in us. The dust pressed together to form Adam was of the same dust used to form Orion’s Belt. We need not feel insignificant, when the same God who formed the stars has taken such care to form our hearts. Our minds. Our souls.
The second fact is that we are being called out into that great unknown. From the pilots sitting on top of thousands of tons of fuel ready to be propelled out into space, to the teen boarding a plane to Haiti preparing to change the lives of others profoundly, there has been placed in each of us a spark to go out into the great beyond and play a role in this universe.
“Lift up your eyes on high and see who has created these stars, the One who leads forth their host by number, he calls them all by name; because of the greatness of His might and the strength of His power, not one of them is missing” (Isaiah 40:26).