Creation, Spiritual

To Introduce the Stars

Vincent Van Gough's "The Starry Night."
Vincent Van Gough’s “The Starry Night.”

“There is something beautiful about a billion stars held steady by a God who knows what He is doing. They hang there, the stars, like notes on a page of music, free-form verse, silent mysteries swirling in the blue like jazz.  And as I lay there, it occurred to me that God is up there somewhere.”
― Donald Miller, Blue Like Jazz: Nonreligious Thoughts on Christian Spirituality

There is just something about a starry night. I love stars because they are  both seemingly random, and magnificently predictable…. both brilliantly solid from our point of view, and intangibly vaporous.

Their brilliance and number give us pause.

Today during worship at church, the band led us in a song about God that mentions stars, quoting Psalms 147:4:

“He counts the stars,
  and assigns each a name.”

So many stars!

We humans like to number the stars too, although we admit there are too many billions to count. We name them things like Ursa Major, Yed Posterior, and BSC 6067; and catalog them by groupings into constellations.

The constellations are so consistent, night after night for thousands of years, that we can navigate ships by their design.  Seemingly eternal, the stars have all the time in the world to guide us.

Human science has determined that stars are but fixed, luminous points of  incandescent celestial bodies, burning as the sun.

And human seekers have determined that the same stars create a zodiac system that can set the course of their lives.

How much power in the Cosmos! How badly we want to explain their workings…

But as I sang the words of the Psalmist (and when my soul quieted enough to hear the Holy Spirit) a vision emerged that transcended astrological phenomenon.

I imagined the Crafter of the universe –  and all that is beyond it –  taking me by the hand to introduce the stars – one by one, by name.

What an odd image brought to my mind!

But what a comfort to my spirit.

Not the clinical, but the mystical – more majestic than can ever be cataloged. You see, I need something more predicable than even the stars to lead me.  I need something that lasts longer than the average life-span of a star – 15 billion years.

I need a forever God.

God – who knows what he’s doing with a billion stars –taking me by the hand. A God who could touch my life from a trillion miles away, coming close enough to breathe light into me, because he loves me – and you – more than a billion stars.

God – steadfast his brilliance, day after day, night after night….even though I am such a paradox, myself  – random and predictable… a vapor on this spinning orb, but eternally a solid being.

Me, you,  and the stars…

Our Creator has all the time in the world to guide us.

Poetry

Your Words and the Strength to Bleed Them – a poem

“CUTTY SARK” painting by Paul M. Kruemcke (my beloved grandfather “Papa”)

circa 1966

By:  Jana Greene

“And I’m bleeding, and I’m bleeding, and I’m bleeding
Right before the Lord
All the words are gonna bleed from me
And I will think no more
” –  The White Stripes, Seven Nation Army

Words

like the ocean when you are standing at the end of the world

right about to fall off the edge.

Just when you think you’ve run out of sea

the world becomes round and look! 

Endless more!

More to say.

More to think.

More to write.

Units of communication,

Words,

transfused into us by our Creator.

On the waters of written language

The world takes passage in order to think.

Thought-provoking words inspire

ignite and set into motion

Kingdoms, governments and laws.

I write in order to unthink.

Unable (unwilling)  to tourniquet the thoughts

with substance or busy-ness or logic,

the flow commences with a single prayer,

“Lord, give me the words.

And lend me Your strength to bleed them.”

Words, woven together

one pitifully weak and thin thread at a time.

One narrow thread of thought,

 meaningless by itself,

white with a memory of bliss until it bleeds from the loom pink,

and then red with heartache.

Keep weaving until the thread changes to the blues of struggle

and the yellows of rejoicing,

and a million shades in between.

My history

thread by thread

word by word

becomes a sail.

Patched when torn

woven with those glorious words

for which God gives us with generous abundance.

Which God reminds us to use carefully.

To choose carefully.

To bleed wisely and weave gloriously.

Under the wind of His grace…

To sail upon.