The moonlight filters through the bathroom window spilling into the tub like liquid. As I shuffle through the room in the wee hours of the morning, I am tempted to climb in and bathe in the pure white light. The need to sleep overpowers the odd feeling that I should stay and soak it in. It is as if I am being issued an invitation. For a moment, I consider what the result would be of lying back in the tub and gazing out my window into the sky, through the trees, to see the hunter’s moon. Would I get moonburn as the beams saturated me? It is reflected light, so I guess no…there would be no moonburn. Would my eyes adjust to this clear, crisp brightness which seems to call to me? If I brought my pillow in and a blanket would it make it any less weird to lie in the bathtub soaking in the moonlight? Or would it just make me crazy? Would it even be possible to sleep in the midst of that kind of light? Or would my brain remain awake? These are the kinds of questions that keep me up in the early hours, while I am trying to drift back into dreamland. As soon as I climb back into the warm covers, the temptation to move my bedding into the light passes. However, as I lie there in my bed I still feel the pull of the moon. I wonder is this how the ocean feels? Does it have a mysterious connection with the light too? Does the ocean long to sleep but cannot because the moon awakens life within it? My mind rambles until it finally fades into a foggy sleep filled with moon beams, and shimmering light.
In a couple of hours the alarm wakes me from my slumber to prepare for the day. I remember then that there is supposed to be a lunar eclipse. A blood moon. I quietly make my way to the front porch, and then out into the yard. Suddenly, I feel the magic around me. The tops of the trees are gently swaying, but only the tops. I can see the stars above them clearly. The crickets are singing a soft song as they begin to drift off just before dawn. I look up to see the moon, half shining brightly and the other half hiding in shadow. It is cloaked, as if it is putting on a coat. There is no red color as I had expected…only a golden yellow. My arms tingle and my hair blows. I am no longer an observer; I am part of the scene. I can almost HEAR music…actual notes and I half expect a voice to speak to me. The wind is God’s whisper. I cannot discern its meaning, only that he is there…his presence hovers. I wait in silence not daring to open my mouth in the sacred moment. I listen to bells in the trees, and strings hopping among the grass. The day is about to dawn and I am there as a witness the change from night to day. However badly I want to sit in the magic, I cannot stay. I withdraw into the house…into my morning routine.
After my workout and shower I rush back to the scene, hoping to blend into the moment again, but it has all changed. The moon is completely gone, either covered in clouds or behind the mountain…I cannot tell which. The stars too have disappeared. The sky is lighter, announcing that the sun is about to arrive. The magic is gone and my mind turns to work and then moves quickly into checklist mode. As I move into my day I am wondering why the blood moon was not red. I check NASA’s web page for the live coverage and commentary. (Yes there are eclipse commentators who sound an awful lot like golf announcers. They almost whisper, as if they talk too loudly they will interrupt the moons gravity and throw the whole eclipse off schedule.) The eclipse is over. The instant replay pictures (yes…instant replay) show a red, crimson moon. I must have caught the end…or the beginning before the reflection reddened.
The sky on my way to work is spectacular. The sun does not want the moon to get all the credit for the red, and makes a show stopping sunrise just to prove where all that color really comes from. The clouds are 3-D. They are all shades of gray, blue, and pink which pop upon the backdrop of a red/orange sky. There are more moments of beauty that change minute to minute as the sun rises in the east. I watch and take it all in.
I know there are scientific reasons for all of this natural phenomena. I know there are people who can explain every detail in a language I do not comprehend. I am thankful for those people. I also know there are people who predict the events to come by the stars. They can give me a play by play of what each significant display could mean. I believe God uses the cosmos as part of his design and I am thankful there are those who can see it, but I do not pretend to understand any of these things. The scientist and the prophets are important…however, for me, it is a more personal thing. Spiritual to be sure…almost mystical. I attribute every detail to God. He is the creator…making everything out of nothing. He paints with clouds and light. He is the orchestrator. He moves heaven and Earth…and about a billion stars. He lines them all up in a row. He is the designer. Placing me…a small, miniscule spot…in a place so I can SEE all of his attributes in the sky. Putting life within me so that I can FEEL his presence in the dawn, and giving me ears to HEAR his music in the wind. To me, this is more significant than all the scientific data, or the prophetic revelations. A God big enough to hold the universe’s mysteries in his hands, and small enough to number the hairs on my head. A God who cares for me so much that he awakens me with moonlight and invites me to bask in his mysteries at dawn. A God who knows that mysteries are my favorite. A God who uses clear, white light to reveal the truth in the darkness…he is everywhere and he loves me… and that is the greatest mystery of all.