The Stars

“The stars, like dust, encircle me
In living mists of light;
And all of space I seem to see
In one vast burst of sight.”

The Stars, Like Dust–Isaac Asimov

It’s winter here. I’d forgotten what winter was like. The air is so cold, so still. There is no wind; the cold seeps into your bones and skin until you realize that you can’t feel your nose anymore. The grass is frozen. When you walk on it, it crackles and crushes and you look back and your footprints are there, you can see them, a tale of where you’ve been that tells where you’re going by the death behind you. But they were dead already. There’s no snow. The sky is perfectly cloudless. You wonder if it was too cold for even the clouds, and the frozen over face of the moon reflects light to earth more brilliantly than you could have ever imagined.

You look at your feet, and a thousand tiny shards of light reflect back at you from the frozen dew-tipped blades of grass. It’s beautiful. And your eyes are drawn upward, and for a moment, all you can see is the brilliance and sheer joy exuded by the moon. The moon was made for a night like this. It is her night; she is arrayed to win hearts, and hearts are won. For how could you refuse love to the young, old, wise, innocent, exuberant, bashful, beauty of the moon?

Then your eyes adjust, and you realize that she is not alone. For  a host of stars and planets pay court, not dimmed, but brightened by her radiance. Familiar and yet new, the constellations dance across the heavens, and the stately planets tread with measured air to their alotted places. And you remember to breath, and your breath clouds the air for a moment, but they shine out once again. It seems as though your breath falls to earth to add itself to the shattered light reflected back to the heavens.

You feel so small.

The stars. They really serve no purpose for humanity. They are beautiful, true; but they are so far away, and so quiet, and so far.

So far.

At the beginning of time, when God spoke the stars into being, “the morning stars sang together and all the sons of God shouted for joy.”

The stars sang together. The stars are a reminder of the time before sin tainted the world, when the light and beauty and joy of the creation were not stained by death. And in the new heaven and the new earth, the stars will once again sing for joy.

And there will be no sun or moon, for God will be their light.

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