Tuesday, March 31, 2009

The Bright Morning Star

"I am the root and the descendant of David, the bright morning star." (Revelation 22:16)

I can remember it vividly. When I was very young, my mother took me down to the steps of the living room during a severe thunderstorm. I remember seeing the sky light up beyond the blinds of our living room windows. I remember counting the seconds until the thunder clapped in applause to the light show provided by the lightning. To her credit, mother provided an unmatched comfort and sense of safety by teaching us to sing My Lord is Near Me all the Time:

I've seen it in the lightning;
heard it in the thunder;
and felt it in the rain.
My Lord is near me all the time.
My Lord is near me all the time.

Now I teach the same song to my children.

Over the last week or so, it has rained almost non-stop. Dark clouds have replaced the sunshine. Regardless of what time of the day it has been, most every weatherman in the state of Alabama seems like a genius these days. All they have to say is that it will be dark, cloudy, and that there is a strong chance of rain and thunderstorms. Guess what. They would be correct. Two weeks of saying this has probably erased two years of inaccuracies for many a weatherperson. Now, they are brilliant because they knew the rain was coming. They knew the storms were on their way. They knew it was going to be dark for a while.

Sometimes it is the same with life, isn't it? Sometimes we go through long periods of darkness, don't we? Uncertainty. Trapped in the thunderstorms of life. Sound familiar? You are not the only one. No matter how often we go through them, we know that sooner or later another band of showers will be on their way.
But, it takes the storms of life to help us appreciate the sunny days. It takes a little rainstorm every now and then to help strengthen our roots so we can grow stronger.

In the concluding chapter in the Book of Revelation, Jesus introduces himself as the Bright and Morning Star. In ancient times, the morning star was seen as a sign of a new day. A new time. A period of refreshment and new beginnings. The darkness subsided at the sign of the morning star.

Jesus is reminding the Church, through the signs and visions of the apostle John, that he is the light of the world. He is the light that penetrates the darkness. He is the voice that calms the storms. He is Lord of the thunderstorms. He is our source of refreshment. He is our source of a new beginning. He is the Bright and Morning Star.

Tired of feeling abandoned during the thunderstorms of life? Look to the Bright Morning Star. Need a sense of refreshment and renewal? Trust Him during your trials. Even in the darkness, we have a shelter from the storm. And from Him, all darkness must flee.

As we struggle through the storms of life, we do, indeed, see it in the lightning, hear it in the thunder, and feel it in the rain. Too often it seems. It is good to know, however, that our Lord is with us all the time.

Is it raining as much inside as it is outside today? Has the weatherman been right about much more than the weather outside lately?

If so, look to the Bright Morning Star. He is our source of comfort and safety during the storms of life.