Lessons from the Moon

moonLately I have been fully enamored with the moon. It has captured my attention, and on more than one occasion taken my breath away. I continue to attempt to capture it in photos with my low quality cameras, and much to my chagrin they never quite show the beauty of what I am seeing. It doesn’t stop me though. Again and again I take pictures trying to capture the beauty. Not only has it been my photo obsession of late, the moon has become a one of my teachers of what it looks like to walk with Christ, and be fully yoked to Him. The moon is a great visual in nature of abiding and the results of one who abides and becomes who they are intended to be.

As my fascination with the moon as grown, so have the lessons. It always seems to catch me off guard and draw me in whether it be the night sky, morning sky, and sometimes the in-between sky, quietly reflecting light. Sometimes it appears huge and bright and other times just a hint of its existence as it reflects the light that is available. The moon just is what it is. Set in the sky by the Creator of the World to mark time. The moon stays in its orbit and stays true to its purpose, “And God said, ‘Let there be lights in the expanse of the sky to distinguish between the day and the night, and let them be signs to mark the seasons and days and years. And let them serve as lights in the expanse of the sky to shine upon the earth.’ And it was so.” (Genesis 1:14-15) And it was so, and it was good. Every day it continues to be so for as long as God deems it to be good.

Reflecting light, that is its main offering. The moon has nothing in and of itself, it reflects the light of a greater object, the sun. There is no dark side of the moon like we call it, the whole surface of the moon receives light. Just because we cannot see it, doesn’t mean it is not there. There is a rhythm and order to how much light we see. It is not always a super moon. Sometimes it is a new moon which to us seems like no moon at all, but it is there ready for the beginning of a new phase.

It is so interesting to me that God created this light for night, but it gives no light of its own. It is purely a reflection and it is impacted by the earth’s position. The phases of the moon and the reflection have given me much to ponder about being who Christ made me and abiding with Him. It is a great reminder that it will look different at different times. I think it is fascinating that when we cannot see the moon, we call it a “new moon.” When God is doing a new work in me I want it to see it and be fully aware, but the moon reminds me that it may seem like nothing is going on at all, and then it may be a slow process of revealing the light and the new thing. The full moon does not last any longer than the rest of the phases. It is a journey and process. The moon is always where it is supposed to be, and the proper light for that time and season reflects off its surface. I need patience to trust that as I faithfully abide this will be true of me also.

Orbiting around the earth and joining us on our journey around the sun provides us with another amazing phenomenon, the tides. By being in its proper location the moon impacts the waters of the earth. The tides ebb and flow because of the moon’s pull. The tides impact the seacoast and people’s livelihood and schedules but there is a consistency even to them that can be planned out and plotted because the moon is steady as it orbits the earth as it has done since it was spoken into existence.

Ebb and flow, sometimes it draws the waters in and sometimes they are pulled away. I am reminded that is the way even when it feels uncomfortable as I walk this journey with Christ. It will pull some near and others will be repelled. Sometimes by being where God asks us to be in our truest identity draws people closer to Christ, but others flee from it. It is hard not to take that personal, and I do need to double check and make sure the repelling or the attraction is not about me overshadowing the true light of Christ, but when I am in my space and being faithful this is still going to be the reality.

God is a creative God of great purpose. The moon has reminded me of Paul’s words in Ephesians 2 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—  not by works, so that no one can boast.  For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. (8-10) Like the moon we were created by God, and like the moon in and of ourselves we are nothing, but because of God creating us and giving us a purpose we shine brightly His light and achieve the purposes that are for us. The moon rotates around the earth, it has a daily-ness and a monthly-ness and yearly-ness but all is impacted by its position, and the sun’s light. I want to be in position to do the purposes that were planned for me before time, before even the moon was placed in its sky and to reflect the true light that will illuminate the path for all to see in the darkness. The moon is my reminder first and foremost that all of creation declares God’s glory and secondly that I was designed to do the same.

 

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