I couldn’t sleep the night before last. This happens frequently. I don’t truly wake up screaming…but it might help if I did. I got up and went outside to look at the stars. I have found this practice to be very helpful and calming. I know that God has placed the stars in the sky to teach us about Himself. You see His majesty, beauty and the greatness of His creation in the sky. In fact, in Romans He says he holds men accountable for what they can learn about Him from what they see in Creation. In so many words God warns us we ignore the knowledge of Him, afforded by nature, at our peril. (My crude paraphrase…but it’s a concept familiar to attorneys …known as “notice.”) Paul actually says, in Romans, that man is “without excuse” before God because of the “invisible things known” about the Creator from His creation.
Anyway…it is calming. I even like to think God sort of raps on the blackboard of His night time school room with his pointer (do you remember your teachers doing that in grade school? Sometimes it wasn’t the board that got the “rapping”) by sending meteorites streaking across the sky. Just to get my attention. Why else would He allow me to be looking in the right direction if He didn’t want me to see them and learn? If I’m on the back patio for 30-40 minutes I usually see three or four. A big one shot right through Orion’s belt a few nights before. But, that was nothing.
Early Thursday morning I was looking at Orion…where I’m usually looking…and suddenly I became aware of a star I had never noticed before. At first glance, out of the corner of my eye, I thought it was an airplane. The light was so bright. It was brighter than any star I had ever seen under any conditions. I watched for several seconds. It was just a single white light …like a star. It did not move as an airplane would have moved. It had none of the secondary lights which are usually red. Then it got brighter and still did not move. If it had been an airplane and had lights that bright I would have estimated it as flying very low, which would have made the movement of an airplane discernable. The time was about 4:15 am. The light was brighter than the Morning Star that comes up about an hour later. Then after three to four seconds it dimmed by half…then it went dark! It was gone. If you drew a line from Orion’s head to Polaris, the star/light would have been located about one third of the way from Orion and down just a hands breadth from the line. It was not obscured by a cloud. There were none. All the smaller stars were plainly visible in the same area.
I was wide awake and had all my faculties working (as much as they ever do).
I think I witnessed the death of a star. Call me crazy, but I know what I saw. I was amazed! It was as if God knew He had a particularly dull student whose attention had visibly waned. I then thought how loving and kind our God is, if I had actually witnessed a star die, to have caused the star …a star!…to explode millions of light years away…just to get my attention. Naturally, you will say I flatter myself too much. I would say the same if you were claiming a star had died for you. But, that is the kind of Creator who made us all. I’m sure He would kill a star for you, too. He has lots of them. Many more than the people who have populated his Earth. And that’s not even counting all the stars in our galaxy!
Then I came back to my paltry senses and remembered something someone said several years ago about the stars. “Stars are like greatness. The thing that causes greatness may have long since died, but the residual effect of greatness is still visible…just as stars may have died long ago, but their light can still be seen because they travel millions of light years to get here.” The person then pointed out how the thing that had made America great had long ago ceased. Alexis de Tocqueville said “America is great because she is good.” Along the same lines, his contemporary, and our 16th President Abraham Lincoln said, “Let us hope that in right there is might.” (It’s chiseled into the lintel over the door to the Courthouse in Central Los Angeles…at least that is where I recall reading it.)
If America is no longer good, can we expect God to continue blessing her? Why would He? That may be why we are cursed with the current leadership of our country. It may be why those jet liners in Libya have gone missing in the eve of the anniversary of September 11. Maybe that is why I.S.I.S. is running amok and we think they are the junior varsity of terrorists and we “have no plan” to deal with them?
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