Summer is finally almost here. I love summer! The Midwest June moving into July heralds the lush green of the region, the trilling songbirds, raucous katydids, sultry air and majestic thunderstorms, and best of all, that harbinger of summer here—fireflies. Or lightning bugs—those little garden flashlights.
I love the warm (okay, hot and humid) muggy days of summer that wrap around me like a blanket. I love the balmy evenings when the lightning bugs and the stars twinkle together. And to be truthful, I like the lightning bugs even more than real lightning, and way more than the Fourth of July fireworks display. They are God’s own fireworks display. And unlike lightning and fireworks, they don’t terrify my cats.
Summer, with its clear cozy nights, is also the time to look up and wonder at the stars. My interest in astronomy has only increased my sense of wonder as I’ve learned about the amazing properties of stars.
Some stars spin rapidly and “leak” radiation as they spin. Here on earth, scientists used to wonder whether these pulses of energy were actually messages from other inhabitants of the universe, calling us. “Hello, is anyone out there?” Now we know better about these stars that we call neutron stars, but I still think they are messages—messages from God.
At ground level, the lightning bugs remind me of my voicemail icon that blinks whenever I have a message waiting for me. It is as if the bugs are saying, “This is a message from God.” When I am tempted to complain about the summer heat, the message may be, “This is God calling. Have you checked the weather on Venus lately? The current temperature there is 900 degrees. Be thankful you don’t live there!”
But most of the time, the message is simply, “This is God calling. Come and meet me.”
God calls us all, not just through lightning bugs and neutron stars but in the everyday blessings of life which come from God, and especially in the blessing of Jesus who, while on this earth, probably himself looked up at the stars and looked around at the bugs and thanked God for these simple blessings.
God loves sending messages to us and getting messages from us. God only asks that we keep the line open with a minimum of busy signals, voicemails, and unanswered calls. Have you checked your messages lately?
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