The thick, wooly clouds and chilly morning mists of early June in southern England have reflected my insides a little too well lately. Nothing is wrong, but the monotony of routine and responsibility has simply lulled me to sleep. My gratitude muscles need toning and my wonder reflexes need sharpening. From the atmosphere to my attitude, life has been a bit grey and I haven't made any earnest effort to conjure some color.
Over an afternoon cup of tea with friends (yes, the entire British-tea-drinking stereotype is spectacularly true), the idea of a spontaneous trip to the seaside sprang into life. We volleyed the thought around, we came up with reasons to just stay home,we sipped and nibbled and stayed a little grey.
"We're doing it," a brave soul finally declared. The scones were hastily finished and the bill paid. A few short hours and a bit of petrol later we were sitting on the coast, our palms pressed against the cool beach pebbles and the wind whipping our hair.
The daytime was living it's final moments. Honey-colored sunlight dripped over the rolling, sheep-dotted hills and my heart ached with the beauty of it all. We'd serendipitously arrived to the coast at Golden Hour, that sublime slice of day in which the dying sun casts the landscape in a delicious golden glow. I imagine every hour in Heaven will look like this. Feel like this. Where the warm sunlight somehow fills up your lungs.
When my feet hit that seashore, the grey of the last weeks evaporated and was replaced with miles of gold.
Sometimes grey is comfortable, like a blanket that keeps you trapped in the fog of sleep, of numbness. It's not until you find the Golden Hours that the grey becomes unbearable.
Unlike the steady rhythm of sunrise and sunset, which has produced a Golden Hour everyday since His mouth spoke the heavenly lights into being, Golden Hours of the spirit don't come to us by a clock. Sometimes we must chase the light. We must put down the tea, leave the sleepy village, and expend every ounce of our breath climbing the sea cliffs until we glimpse that sunbathed panorama view.
"When Jesus spoke again to the people, He said, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life." John 8:12
Jesus. He is the burning ball of light that casts this world in a heavenly glow. He is the one who rips off the grey blanket and calls us to live with Him in the light of truth, love, holiness, peace, and joy. He asks us to follow Him, but I want to do Jesus one better. I want to chase Him, to chase the Light until Golden Hour is every hour and all the world drips with honey.
Jesus is alive and I am redeemed. This is golden.
Chasing the Light can look like a bursting-with-gratitude heart during a seaside sunset or a bursting-with-girlfriends table during a weekly Bible study.
Chasing the Light can look like dusting off a forgotten Bible and reading the words aloud until you believe they are true. Chasing the Light can mean kneeling on the bedroom floor and crying out words you didn't know you had to tell Him. Chasing the Light can mean removing the earbuds on your morning commute so as to truly see each soul that passes by.
Just as the sun is ever shining on some part of the world, God is always working out His salvation on the earth by bathing the human race in the honey-colored light of His Savior Son. There is no room for grey on this side of the resurrection. The Golden Hour is here. It's up to us to chase it.
"But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light." 1 Peter 2:9