Pastor’s pondering

I moved away from northern New York state over two decades ago.  I’ve been back from time to time to visit my in-laws or to see my son and his family when they were stationed there in the Army.  Yet, boy-oh-boy, what I wouldn’t give to be back just a few days from now.  In fact, I’ve heard that a lot of people want to be there on Monday, and probably will be.  Why?  The solar eclipse.  At 3:22pm EDT, for a period of about 3 minutes and 39 seconds, it will be totally dark as the sun goes behind the moon.

Now, we experienced a partial eclipse here in Virginia just a few years ago.  In August 2017, we watched as a large portion of the sun was concealed for a couple of minutes.  Yet, it wasn’t a totality, and it wasn’t for as long as what is expected to occur this year.  So, I can only imagine what it will be like.  Will everyone be frozen in place, staring up at the sky, wondering when the sun will once again appear?

Yet, do you realize, what will take place on April 8th is nothing in comparison with what took place some two thousand years ago?  An often forgotten about portion of Good Friday is that while Jesus hung there on the cross, the sun didn’t shine for three hours.  Matthew, Mark, and Luke all record that from the hours from noon until 3pm, “darkness came over the whole land” (Mtw 27:45, Mrk 15:33, Lk 23:44) and Luke’s Gospel clarifies that “the sun’s light failed” (Lk 23:45).  Now, some have said that this was a massive solar eclipse, something which has never been seen like it again.  Perhaps, perhaps not.  I have no way of knowing whether that was possible. 

But here’s what I do think happened.  People were staring up at the sky, wondering when the sun would once again appear.  They stood there in darkness, uncertain and afraid.  And they are still doing it today.

When The Son died on that cross, people thought the world was coming to an end.  When they placed him in the tomb, they thought his life, and theirs, was over.  Yet, a short time later, the tomb was opened, and he proved that was not the case.  He rose, testifying to the truth that Light will always overcome the darkness – whether it’s three minutes, three hours, or even three days, the Son’s Light will never fail.  There’s no need to stare into the sky and wonder if he’s going to come back.  He has already proven he will.  Are you ready?

                                                            Always pondering,    Pastor Steve

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