Monday, April 8, 2024

Devotionals for the Heart: What the Solar Eclipse Taught Me about Life

Reflections about the Solar Eclipse
A devotional by Aubrey Taylor

“The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp.”—Revelation 21:23 (NIV)

Many Americans have been looking forward to this day, April 8, for over a year because of the solar eclipse. This is especially true in my hometown, which happens to lie directly in the arc that cuts from Mexico to Canada, where residents can view a total solar eclipse without having to travel.

With such an exciting moment upon us, I asked God to give me a few things to reflect on today. If you live in another part of the country, or another country altogether, I pray these meditations might still bless you.

During a solar eclipse, the moon’s shadow seems to blot out the brightness of the sun. It is amazing that something so much smaller than the sun can block out such great light. This made me think: How often do I allow small things to block out the light of God? Whether they are bad things or good things, do I allow them to linger in the forefront of my mind, dimming His light and casting a shadow in my life?

Of course, there are dark seasons in our lives that seem to fall over us though we have done nothing to bring them on. During an eclipse, the sun’s light is temporarily blocked by the moon, but it does not stay that way. The moon moves on, continuing in the path laid out for it from before time. Likewise, God moves seasons of darkness in and out of our lives at their appointed times.

The most exciting part of a solar eclipse is called “totality”, which is when the moon’s shadow completely covers the sun. This darkest moment is the only time at which the sun’s corona can be seen from Earth. It seems to me that in my own darkest moments, I get to know God in special ways that I never would have if I had lived continually in light and warmth.

My husband purchased special glasses for us to use to view the eclipse. Looking directly at the sun can damage the eyes. Likewise, God is so holy, no one can look upon Him and live. Yet one day we will see Him face to face. We will see Him as He truly is! According to 1 Corinthians 13:12 (KJV), “For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.” The concept of seeing through a glass darkly is the English rendering of a single Greek word; ainigma (from which we get our English word “enigma”). It means something that is obscured.

The part of the country I live in happens to be known for long, dark winters in which the sun is regularly obscured by clouds. We may go for weeks without seeing the sun. It is difficult and depressing. It can sometimes be hard to remember that the sun is even there! When I first began struggling with depression decades ago, I did not know that Jesus Christ would eventually bring me out. I had to live through a few of those seasons before I learned to trust that the darkness would end, and the Son (Jesus who is the Light of the world) would shine again.

One day, there will be no more dark clouds, no more eclipses, and no more night—there will be no sun, either! Revelation 21:23 (NIV) tells us that the New Jerusalem (God’s city), “does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp.”

So much anticipation and preparation has gone into this day. It has been estimated that 500,000 people will flood our area to view the eclipse today. Local hotels have been booked for months, road signs are calling for gridlock, and my family has been invited to three separate “eclipse watching parties.” Yet the spectacle will only last a few minutes. When we see Jesus Christ in Heaven, we will be in His presence forever. In light of that, let us ask God that we might view His return with still greater anticipation!

Let’s Pray: Dear Jesus, thank You for the beauty of creation, the sun and moon which give us our seasons, and the way their predictable rotation reminds us of your faithfulness. I pray that Your light will never be eclipsed in my life, and that I will learn to look forward to Your second coming with greater anticipation. In Your Name I pray. Amen.

Song of Reflection #1: “No More Night” by David Phelps. Listen to it here.

Song of Reflection #2:
“Light of That City” by Allison Durham Speer. Listen to it here

Author Bio:

The only child of a single parent, Aubrey Taylor filled her younger years by creating characters and writing stories. This ended around age sixteen when music, friends and part-time jobs began to fill her time. After that came college, work, marriage, and children.

It wasn’t until the world was beginning to come out of the COVID pandemic that God led her back to her love for writing, coupled with a passion she’d always had for history. It was time to start a new adventure!

Along with writing devotionals, Aubrey is the author of the German-perspective 20th Century Fiction series, Gott Mit Uns. She lives in Upstate New York with her husband and three children. When she’s not writing or taking care of her home and family, she enjoys singing and dancing with friends from a German choir and a Bavarian folk dancing group. She is also a lover of Jesus Christ, The Holy Bible, history, German culture, tea, and cats!

Connect with Aubrey:
Amazon Author Page:

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