“But when I look at the stars, I feel like myself.” -Switchfoot, Stars
On Monday night, before the craziness of this semester had officially set in (16 credit hours, 18 hours of work, PCM, homework, AND a social life. Yeah.), a few of my friends and I took a walk to the beach. We hadn’t been off-campus together as a group since returning from Christmas break, so it was a relaxing time to catch up on life.
If you live in the Midwest or pay attention to the news, you’ll know that we’re having a frighteningly warm winter thus far. It was nearly 50 degrees the night we walked to the beach. Yes, you read that correctly. It was “sweatshirt weather,” in Chicago, in January, after dark. I don’t know enough about meteorology or astronomy or basic science to know if this had anything to do with the phenomena I am about to explain, but as we stepped on to the beach, I instinctively looked up…
and there were stars.
Not just the one super-bright star that I’m semi-convinced is fake. Not just some particularly slow-moving airplanes. No, as I began to count the stars out loud while pointing excitedly and bouncing like I was hyped up on sugar, I realized there were more than I could reasonably count! I even managed to locate Orion’s belt.
There were stars. In Chicago. One of the few things I hate about this city is the lack of stars. I was incredibly excited to return this semester, but was sorely disappointed that I hadn’t seen any stars while I was home for Christmas break. Since junior high, looking at the stars has always been one of my biggest reminders of God’s enormity and never-ending faithfulness.
No matter where I am, if I can find a familiar constellation or even see the stars spilled across in their varying levels of brightness, I instantly feel comforted. I love knowing that I see the same stars as my friends across the globe. The fact that God knows each of those stars by name reminds me of my sheer tininess compared to His grandeur.
Simply put, stars tug on my heartstrings on about 12 different levels.
As I said before, I don’t know anything about science. Maybe there is a perfectly logical explanation for the sudden display of splendor over downtown Chicago. However, I prefer my explanation: the night before, I had tossed and turned as I worried (in the way only sinful humans can) about the coming semester. Finally, I started to pray. As I sleepily told my Daddy about my worries and concerns, I asked him to remind me of His faithfulness. I begged Him to allow me to live this season of my life knowing beyond the shadow of a doubt that He was holding my hand. The next night, I went for a walk…
and there were stars.