It was late last night when I finally finished work. It is so beautiful working in the fishing industry @ Sund’s Lodge, so many highlights: fishing at dawn, spending time in God’s creation outside the city, meeting people from around the world.
But it also takes a toll. Yesterday I started at 3:30 am and worked for 19 hours. Around 10:30 as I was falling asleep at my desk I knew it was time to call it a night. But there was a bit of work to do- a gas line was left out on the dock and needed to be put away and everyone else had already finished.
I trudged down to the water- sleepwalking almost. I crossed the road and started down the long dock towards the end where the boats are tied. I coiled the fuel line and tidied up things a bit when the first bits of phosphorescence in the water caught my attention like diamonds sprinkled on a black plate. And just like that, in the midst of utter exhaustion, God broke into the mundane and told me to take a deeper look. And I did. I just stood there at the end of the dock in the deafening silence of a silent, calm Inside Passage. There was no sound and the full moon was totally obscured by the heavy cloud cover. It was so quiet and so beautiful and the phosphorous sprinkled and dazzled around the dock. And so I sat there at the end of the dock by myself and prayed.
Soon my prayer life became consumed with so much that is on my mind. Right now we sit only 1 month from services starting at Bethany North. 1 month! Holy cow…there are signs to order and postcards to advertise services that must be designed…and volunteer teams to recruit to…and so much stuff to think about.
And then suddenly, over the top of the phosphorous I caught site of the brightest light in Port McNeil. Port McNeil sits on Vancouver Island and is about 5 miles by boat from the end of my dock. It is a town of about 2500 so there is a fair # of houselights and streetlights that can be seen by the water. But there is clearly one light that is the brightest light in Port McNeil. All other lights…maybe a few hundred in total…all have a yellowish hue and almost blended together in my sleepy state last night. But the one light, the brightest light, shone just a bit higher and a bit clearer and a bit whiter than all the other lights. Without a doubt, it is the strongest light. And whereas the other lights all flicker on the water but fade after a while, there is something about this brightest light that makes its way every single night all the way across the Inside Passage to the end of our dock.
Now don’t get me wrong, it isn’t a spotlight or anything too crazy, but it’s shine has the farthest reach. As I sat there and once again let the many “to-do’s” fall away and focus only on that brightest light, my sense of calm was once again restored. I once again could appreciate the phosphorous in the water and the silence of the darkened world. And I realized how often in my life I let the noise of all that must be done become my focus but if I stop and allow it, God is the brightest light that can overshadow all else. There He is, shining all the time, waiting for us to spend time with Him and take solace in His presence. The bible promises it here and Jesus,by his very nature, is “God with us.” Truly, God is always there shining in our darkness on us.
Our Father God is always there. Always shining. Always steady. Just like the brightest light in Port McNeil.