My family and I love to have campfires during the cool summer nights at the lake. Everyone pitches in gathering firewood, clearing the fire pit, setting up chairs and grabbing blankets. The experience wouldn’t be complete without the toasty, melted goodness of s’mores!
The sky at the lake is inky blue to black and the stars stand in stark contrast to the depth of the darkness. Many more stars are visible without the glow and glare of the lights from the city. We carefully walk hand in hand as a small comfort to the “scary” darkness. Together, the walk is a bit exhilarating. Alone, it is much more frightening.
An interesting calm comes over us as we tip our heads back to take in the dazzling display of lights overhead. Silence is comfortable. The warmth of the fire wraps us in the moment and holds us together and still — a miracle. There is something majestic about a starry night. It calls forth a moment of awe, amazement and a small breathlessness at the sight.
Could this be what is asked of us as followers of Christ: to tip our heads back and take in all that we see and experience; to be bathed in the warmth of a moment of true presence to God’s handiwork; to be in comfortable silence with the majesty of creation even in the depths and uncertainty of darkness?
These are the moments that matter. I want my children to feel wrapped in warmth, comforted by the presence of family. I want my children to disconnect from the distractions of iPods and cell phones long enough to appreciate the wonder of our world. I want them to know that they are loved beyond measure. And that as much as my husband and I love them, our love pales in the starry light of God’s love for them.
As the long days of summer approach, I wish you moments packed full of awe and amazement. I wish for you small, breathless moments as God’s majesty is revealed.
Step away from problems, distractions and worry — in the backyard, at a local park — just for a moment and take in the night sky. These summer moments are containers for grace.