Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Moonlight? Not really…

The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they reveal knowledge. They have no speech, they use no words; no sound is heard from them. Yet their voice goes out into all the earth, their words to the ends of the world.                               Psalm 19:1-4

All of nature reflects the reality and character of God. Without using words, it screams out what He’s like. But I never really thought too much about it in relationship to the moon. Oh, I’d always admired its beauty when it was full. But how it illustrates who God is? Nope.

Recently I read some interesting facts about the moon. Even the most luminous, the brightest of full moons has no light of its own. The light we see is actually sunlight that has been reflected by the moon’s surface. The sun is the original source of what we see as moonlight.

full moon

Now, things can change the appearance of moonlight.

There are eclipses, which can be full or partial. They happen when the earth comes between the moon and the sun; the dark part we see is hidden by the earth, while the bright part remains lit by the sun. That’s what creates the crescent moon, or the absence of a visible moon altogether.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The moon can sometimes even appear red in an eclipse as the reflected light is distorted!

red moon

There are also two phases that characterize the changing moon; waxing, or waning. Waxing moons are continually growing toward becoming a full moon, and every night it reflects a little more of the sun’s light. A waning moon, however, is declining, and the light it reflects diminishes as darkness becomes more prevalent.

Ultimately, though the moon has no light of its own, it can still illuminate the darkness. It’s just the matter of the degree to which we see the reflected light.

So to make the correlation, we are all moons. Bear with me here.

We, too, have no spiritual light in and of ourselves. God alone is the source of light, and any light we have is given by the Son (1 John 1:5). When we directly reflect His light to others it is only the reflection of God’s glory.

Sometimes we allow other things to get in the way, things that pull at our hearts and, when indulged, get between us and our relationship with the Lord. Those parts remain in partial—or even full—darkness within us. Our ability to reflect Jesus’ light diminishes accordingly (James 1:13-14).

Just like the moon has seasons where it waxes or wanes, we too can go through such seasons. Some seasons we are growing, and His light shines brightly. Other times, such as when we lose our focus or turn away from Him, His light grows dimmer.

The difference is that we have no excuse. But we do have a choice (John 12:46). We can step into the light, or away from it.

The full moon will never look the same to me again.

When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”             John 8:12

You, Lord, are my lamp; the Lord turns my darkness into light.               2 Samuel 22:29

Further reflection:

1. Can you think of a time when your life reflected darkness rather than light?

2. What are some of the things that tend to get between you and your relationship with the Lord?

3. If the moon is a picture of God’s light in your life, would you say it is a waxing moon, or a waning one? Why?

Father, thank You that all of nature cries out Your reality, and that it continually gives me new ways to understand my relationship with You. Please show me those things that I allow to come between us, that hamper the light that You bring. I long to be a waxing moon, and grow to more fully reflect Your light to others.

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