It’s been two months since the eclipse. Hardly anyone is talking about it anymore which means it’s the perfect time for me to talk about it. So, I have a confession to make. I missed it. Yes, I missed it. It’s hard for me to talk about because I so wanted to see it. But in all the months of hearing that it was coming and knowing the exact date, time and location, I still missed it.
“How did that happen?” you may ask.
Well, of course, I knew all along that it was a big deal. But unfortunately, I procrastinated my way out of buying those special and necessary viewing glasses on time. And even though I learned that, during the point of totality, when the moon is completely blocking the sun, it’s okay to look without glasses, I was overly cautious. Besides, in my neck of the woods, it didn’t get nearly as dark as I was expecting so I reasoned it wasn’t time to look up yet. So, I missed it. Yep, I didn’t see it. But that’s a very important key. I didn’t SEE it, but I did experience it. And with the way I’m wired, I am sure that is exactly how it was meant to happen for me.
What I mean is I always see things differently.
Am I the one who sits in a room listening to others discuss a problem and wonders why no one sees the seemingly obvious solution? Am I the one who asks why, why, why—the one who wholeheartedly notices and takes in ALL the circumstances around a situation, and uses ALL the information to imagine solutions or formulate next steps?
So, I didn’t quite miss the eclipse. I just saw it differently. What I focused on instead of the beautiful, anticipated light show was everything that was happening around me because of the eclipse. For two minutes in the middle of the day, I heard the crickets chirp (something generally only heard at night), I saw the subtle change in lighting, and I felt the noticeably cooler temperature outside. It was amazing to me as a display of how in tune the parts of the universe are with each other. But what amazed me more was the lessons I learned from the experience.
You see I missed seeing the main event, but I still experienced the awesome effects of it.
And more importantly, I was reminded that just because I didn’t physically see it doesn’t mean that it wasn’t there or that it didn’t happen. So even though I’m sad that I didn’t see the awesome show, experiencing the eclipse in the way that I did made me think about how I, and others, should experience God.
It reminded me that although we can’t see God, He’s still there.
It tells me that even though I didn’t personally witness Jesus dying on the cross and His glorious resurrection doesn’t mean it didn’t happen, as some might suggest, because I see the effects that Jesus has on the world today. When there is something or someone blocking my view of the presence of God in my life, He is still there. When I am too afraid to look to Him, He shows me in many other ways that He’s still there. Even when the circumstances of my life look a little different than I expected, He’s still there.
I know more than ever that I can confidently focus on God and how He influences the world around me. I can hear the good news of salvation, I can see His shining light that illuminates my path, and I can feel His arms of love surrounding me.
He keeps everything in tune, in harmony.
And He so wants us to be in tune with Him, always in connection. His love shines so brightly upon us. Even when others try to block Him from our lives, as the moon temporarily blocked the sun, He is still there sustaining us. He is still there providing for us, and giving us life.
Do I wish I would’ve seen the eclipse? Yes, but I did the best I could with the tools and information I had at the time. Was I overly cautious? Maybe. But had just as much fun experiencing it in other ways. Will I be more prepared next time? Probably so. No procrastinating next time.
One thing’s for sure. I’m not perfect. I missed the blessing of seeing the eclipse. But I did experience it in my own way. And that’s how it is with me and God. He knows that I see things differently. Because of this, He allows me to experience Him in the way that is right for me. God comes to me in personal ways that I understand and speaks to me through His creation. He comforts me with His loving kindness and shows me His mercy and grace every day.
So, when things get tough and you feel like you can’t see God, or you feel lost in the midst of darkness, don’t feel like you missed Him. He is always there with you. Look for Him in non-traditional ways. Though He may seem hard to find, know that He can never be blotted out.