6/09/2012

Heavenly Declaration

In the early evening on Tuesday, David and I were able to observe the transit of Venus. With a pair of binoculars and a piece of paper, we saw a black dot on the face of the sun appear on the paper.  It was low tech, but it worked.  For those unfamiliar with the transit of Venus (which included myself until this past week), it is a rare event which happens every 100+ years. It also occurs in pairs, the last transit was in 2004 and was best viewable from the East Coast. This time Arizona was a prime spot for viewing. The next time the planet Venus crosses the sun is in 2117. You and I won't be around for that one. Astronomers were able to get incredible pictures of the transit in 2004 and this past week for the first time ever. They've had to rely on drawings and grainy photos from the 1800s for the last one. This astronomical event was on the heels of a recent solar eclipse, and a full moon.

Previous to the Venus event, we were out armed with sunglasses and our low tech solar eclipse equipment, a pinhole camera. Do you remember making one of these from a piece of cardboard in science class? We watched the moon slide into position to block the sun for a few minutes and then travel on. An eerie light leached through the sky and there was a stillness as if the earth was holding its breath. Even the birds were still at its height.

I would have to say we enjoy a nightly show that many of you do not. Living in the West gives you the best views of the Milky Way--bar none. Until you've stood in the darkness with no streetlights or other lighting, and looked up at the amazing, beyond words display of stars so dense and sparkling, you haven't really seen the Milky Way. It's really milky!

Such amazing things that keep us looking up, marveling at the Creator's extravagant handiwork. Order, beauty, incredible creation above us and under our feet. 

King David, the writer of much of Israel's hymn book was in awe of that heavenly display as well.

The heavens proclaim the glory of God. The skies display his craftsmanship. Day after day they continue to speak; night after night they make him known. They speak without a sound or word; their voice is never heard. Yet their message has gone throughout the earth, and their words to all the world. Psalm 19:1-4 NLT
God has placed a silent symphony of praise in the sky for everyone to see. He is the conductor of the orchestra and the choreographer of a celestial ballet.


Another psalmist sings:

He counts the stars and calls them all by name. How great is our Lord! His power is absolute! His understanding is beyond comprehension! Psalm 147:4,5 NLT


I hope you take time this week to enjoy the beauty above and below us. Don't take it for granted and recognize the great gift that's so extravagant from the One who is the Maker of Heaven and Earth


Transit of Venus - Copyright Getty Images
For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God. Romans 1:20 NLT

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Positively encouraging

6/09/2012

Heavenly Declaration

In the early evening on Tuesday, David and I were able to observe the transit of Venus. With a pair of binoculars and a piece of paper, we saw a black dot on the face of the sun appear on the paper.  It was low tech, but it worked.  For those unfamiliar with the transit of Venus (which included myself until this past week), it is a rare event which happens every 100+ years. It also occurs in pairs, the last transit was in 2004 and was best viewable from the East Coast. This time Arizona was a prime spot for viewing. The next time the planet Venus crosses the sun is in 2117. You and I won't be around for that one. Astronomers were able to get incredible pictures of the transit in 2004 and this past week for the first time ever. They've had to rely on drawings and grainy photos from the 1800s for the last one. This astronomical event was on the heels of a recent solar eclipse, and a full moon.

Previous to the Venus event, we were out armed with sunglasses and our low tech solar eclipse equipment, a pinhole camera. Do you remember making one of these from a piece of cardboard in science class? We watched the moon slide into position to block the sun for a few minutes and then travel on. An eerie light leached through the sky and there was a stillness as if the earth was holding its breath. Even the birds were still at its height.

I would have to say we enjoy a nightly show that many of you do not. Living in the West gives you the best views of the Milky Way--bar none. Until you've stood in the darkness with no streetlights or other lighting, and looked up at the amazing, beyond words display of stars so dense and sparkling, you haven't really seen the Milky Way. It's really milky!

Such amazing things that keep us looking up, marveling at the Creator's extravagant handiwork. Order, beauty, incredible creation above us and under our feet. 

King David, the writer of much of Israel's hymn book was in awe of that heavenly display as well.

The heavens proclaim the glory of God. The skies display his craftsmanship. Day after day they continue to speak; night after night they make him known. They speak without a sound or word; their voice is never heard. Yet their message has gone throughout the earth, and their words to all the world. Psalm 19:1-4 NLT
God has placed a silent symphony of praise in the sky for everyone to see. He is the conductor of the orchestra and the choreographer of a celestial ballet.


Another psalmist sings:

He counts the stars and calls them all by name. How great is our Lord! His power is absolute! His understanding is beyond comprehension! Psalm 147:4,5 NLT


I hope you take time this week to enjoy the beauty above and below us. Don't take it for granted and recognize the great gift that's so extravagant from the One who is the Maker of Heaven and Earth


Transit of Venus - Copyright Getty Images
For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God. Romans 1:20 NLT

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