Ramble for Kirwan Uniting Church Keeping in Touch newsletter 30 May 2021

Did you watch the lunar eclipse on Wednesday evening? Some of you were at Bible Study, but I hope that you finished in time to see much of it. Leisa and I lit our firepit and roasted chestnuts, as Leisa set up her camera and tripod in anticipation of the spectacle. Whereupon Greenwood Park floodlights came on at full intensity, right between the rising moon and us. I called down the plagues of Egypt on the Sports and Leisure Department. Before the plagues needed to be inflicted, the lights (which were illuminating an empty park, no games taking place) were extinguished.

It was an awesome spectacle. I was put in mind, of course, of Psalm 19:

The heavens declare the glory of God;

the skies proclaim the work of his hands.

night after night they reveal knowledge.

 

And all over the world, as the earth spun its way around the sun for 24 hours, the astronomical marvel was visible. Psalm 19 again:

They have no speech, they use no words;

no sound is heard from them.

Yet their voice goes out into all the earth,

their words to the ends of the world.

 

For most of the world, its vast oceans, deserts, jungles and uninhabited spaces, the eclipse played to an empty audience. Or did it? God doesn’t need human spectators, his creation claps continual thunderous applause. Psalm 148:

Praise him, sun and moon;

praise him, all you shining stars.

 

So why invite us to the cosmic event? Psalm 8:

When I consider your heavens,

the work of your fingers,

the moon and the stars,

which you have set in place,

what is mankind that you are mindful of them,

human beings that you care for them? 

 

It’s that question, and its answer in God’s essential nature of love, which caps off Psalm 8:

Lord, our Lord,

how majestic is your name in all the earth!

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