Stargazing

by Annette Meyer

“I shall arise early and seek your face.”

It’s 5 am when I awake. The sleeping granddaughter, having decided that she needed to sleep with me to keep me warm, snuggles in a little closer to me. The grandson cries out briefly from the other room; an imaginary disturbance in his dream, then silence returns to the household. In the still of the night I say good morning Abba Father as I enter His presence and I pray.

I soon arise from the bed in the predawn darkness to gaze out the window for awhile. The rain clouds of yesterday have drifted away and the skies are crystal clear, allowing the stars to dominate the scene. Delightfully I realize that I have not seen so many stars as are in this moonless night sky in such a long time! The twinkle filled night constantly calls out to me but I am usually surrounded by trees or buildings that obscure a clear view and can only enjoy a brief glimpse of an ever expanding realm. Here in Virginia the nocturnal view is amazingly panoramic from all sides of the house! I determine that I shall stargaze every night possible till I am satiated! It’s well worth losing some sleep over.

As always, when open skylines, time and opportunity allow me to stargaze, I say a prayer of gratitude and indulge my love of witnessing the beauty found in the heavenlies! This always brings to mind another open sky viewpoint from my past, a tumultuous period of great emotional turbulence and an absolute uncertainty of everything in my life.

My world had been shaken, I was now a single parent, devastated, barely standing, wounded, weary, feeling fearfully alone at this unforeseen crossroads.  Unquestioned Faith in a higher power was something that I had seen in adults who had surrounded me as a child. Trusting, walking with unshakeable faith in such a large capacity, was something that I had sought to mimic and instill in my daily life from my childhood. Somehow I now felt separated, fearful that the connection was frayed and that I was in extreme danger of irrevocably losing my way!

At this particular spiritual crossroad I was so aware of my own human inadequacies and the multitude of human needs I suddenly had–with no way of having them filled by my own hand–that I cried out constantly for encouragement and at times just to be given enough strength to take my next breath.

The mobile home I was renting sat on top of a hill with an open view to the North. Often when unable to sleep and not wanting to disturb the children’s slumber with my quiet tears and restlessness, I would bundle up in a quilt and slip out onto the wooden deck. I had a deep hungering need to sit alone under the open skies and commune with the Source of all that exists. Somehow seeing the silent stars above calmed my anxieties, allowing me to breathe freely and feel surrounded with a sense of His comforting presence.

On one particularly tough night, I asked for a sign to reassure me that I was not struggling in this situation alone. Through tears I asked, ‘Father would you please send a shooting star’ as a witness of His awareness of my plight. And He did! The briefest of moments later a brilliant long streak suddenly slashed across the night sky in front of me and was instantly gone; I had my unquestionable witness that He still heard me and that He Loved Me in my brokenness! I then returned to my bed and slept with peaceful reassurance!

Always in the decades since then I have watched the skies just in case. I have tried to see the annual “meteor showers” show, but so rarely get to witness them. But that’s ok, I’ll still take the spontaneous ones that I know are a direct message of remembrance for me and I will be content with those.

As I stand here in the home of my adult children who sleep peacefully, all warm and comfortable so many years later, I’m gazing out the window of my grandson’s bedroom on the other side of the house, and there, suddenly a bright streak appears, flashing, and in the space of a gasp it has come and gone, and I smile and whisper “Thank you for reminding me.” Just as before I’m soon ready to go back to bed and sleep in peace.

Looking back I marvel at how much I have grown in the spiritual realm since that special night of decades past when He heard me in my distress and sent me Hope in the form of a shooting star.

The rain clouds of yesterday have drifted away and the blue skies are crystal clear as I write on this beautiful morning. So it also goes in my life.

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