Friday, December 20, 2013

A Star in the East

Since Daylight Savings Time ended, I have been leaving work in the dark.  The expansive, clear night sky is lovely as I walk to my car.  Each evening, I watch for the position and phase of the moon and then my eyes rest on a lone, bright star in the eastern sky.  When my husband Larry McCoy and I visited a planetarium-theme IMAX presentation a couple of years ago, I thought I learned that the bright star I see in the eastern sky is the planet Saturn, but then, a friend who's an amateur astronomer said that it couldn't possibly be.  Whatever that faraway, bright star is, it guides me at the end of my workday, helping me to slow my pace by revealing its beauty against the ebony sky.  As Christmas approaches, it makes me think of the lyrics to Rise Up, Shepherd, and Follow: "There's a star in the east on Christmas morn...."  As the holidays approach, I also think of my late parents, Chuck and Barb Naidl, who used to blissfully spend hours outside in lawn chairs, enjoying the nuances of the summer night sky.  As a teenager, I was too busy being a teen to spend time joining them in their star-gazing pursuits.  But now that I'm older, I, too, am captivated by those same celestial nuances.  How blessed I am to have had parents who taught me gently, by example, to appreciate the beauty and mystery of the night sky.  And how blessed we all are to have that eastern star call us to rise up and follow during this season of expectancy and wonder.

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