I do not really like the shorter days of fall. It is dark when my alarm goes off in the morning these days, making it all that much harder to wake up. When I drive to the bus or all the way in to work, I have to use my headlights. Admittedly, that's not a big deal, but it seems that just as I am getting used to bright, sunlit mornings, we dive back into gloomy darkness.
But today was different.
I drive east to get to work and this morning the sun was just peeking over the horizon as I left my neighborhood. The horizon was clear, but at just about the three o'clock mark above the horizon and stretching to about the 1 o'clock point behind my car there was a thin, bumpy layer of clouds. These clouds made for a near perfect refraction of the light coming from the rising sun.
Have you ever sat and watched the remnants of a campfire when all the wood has burned down and you are left with glowing embers? The embers glow reddish-orange with tinges of blue around the edges. Now pick up that mind-picture and put it up on the sky. Throw on a little bright pink everywhere for good measure and you have some idea of what the sunrise looked like this morning. I wish I could have taken a picture so you could see it. Of course a picture never does such things justice.
I often ride with my radio off but this morning, I had a CD of praise music in. I turned it off. It seemed to me that the heavens were doing all the praise that was necessary. Indeed, the heavens were declaring the glory of God, the skies were proclaiming the work of his hands (Ps. 19).
Psalm 148 calls for the sun and the moon to praise God and for all God's saints to join in that praise. And that was exactly what happened this morning. I praised God with and through the sunrise.
And if I had woken up in light, as I did all summer long, I would have missed the glory.