The Sky at Night

The Sky at Night
"Two things fill me with constantly increasing admiration and awe, the longer and more earnestly I reflect on them: the starry heavens without and the moral law within."—Immanuel Kant1

This is an exercise for the evening or nighttime, preferably on a clear night, when the stars and moon are clearly visible. Outside is best, but if that isn’t possible, anywhere with a view outside a window will suffice.

Gaze up at the vastness of the sky. Observe the stars, twinkling in their uncountable millions, at distances incomprehensible to our finite minds. Look at the moon, our nearest neighbor in the great expanse of space. Take your time; the vista before you is immense and worthy of your attention.

The Lord, whose name is excellent, has set His glory in those heavens.—So wrote David, the psalmist.2 You are following his meditation, for he too sat and observed:

“When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which You have ordained …”3

When you look up at the stars, the moon, the great spread of the sky, do you feel small and insignificant? David seemed to feel the same, yet it is his next realization that merits our focus. He is speaking to the Lord when he asks,

“... what is man that You are mindful of him, and the son of man that You visit him? For You have made him a little lower than the angels, and You have crowned him with glory and honor.”4

As small as you may feel, as insignificant as you may judge yourself to be in the great scope of the world and history, God thinks about you. He “is mindful” of you. The God who set the great creation into motion, the same God knows the very hairs of your head.5 He knows your thoughts and plans.6 He knows your secret sorrows just as He knows your wishes.7 You are not alone in the universe; God knows and loves you.8

And with this meditation on the all-encompassing, virtually incomprehensible love of God for you—one solitary individual—you can conclude along with David,

“O Lord, our Lord, how excellent is Your name in all the earth!”9

1. Immanuel Kant (1724–1804) was a German philosopher and anthropologist at the end of the Enlightenment.
2. Psalm 8:1
3. Psalm 8:3
4. Psalm 8:4–5
5. Luke 12:7
6. Hebrews 4:12
7. Psalm 38:9
8. John 3:16
9. Psalm 8:9

Abi May

Abi May (also credited as Chris Hunt) is a former contributor to Activated from Great Britain.

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