Generally Speaking: Don’t miss your sunrise

By MARILYN TINNIN COLUMNIST,

“Life comes at you fast.”

A few years ago, a national insurance company successfully stamped its slogan in our minds with that concept we understand all too well.

Most of us would add also that life comes at you loud on most days—loud in the sense that, like static on the radio, we fail to hear the music we love because we focus on all the wrong things.

I recently ran into an old friend and fellow writer I had not seen in a while.

We vowed to do better at keeping up with each other. He shared a recent personal epiphany, and I think it so worth repeating. A few days prior to our visit, he sat alone on the beach savoring the last hours of a vacation and watching a breathtaking sunrise.

At the time, he had a few temporary “unknowns” in his life, and they were producing a degree of anxiety—as they tend to do—even for one like Dan who has been walking with the Lord for a very long time.

He watched while the colors on the horizon splattered changing hues across the water.

He began to anticipate that climactic second when a tiny slice of sky would sandwich itself between the rising sun and the gentle roll of the ocean blanket.

There was nothing at that moment separating his circumstances and his confidence in God’s faithfulness to work everything according to His sovereign will.

“Postcard” moments like that one give a brief glimpse of the greatness of God, the smallness of man, and the incredible truth that He can handle all the cares and burdens of our individual life stories.

There is a peace, like a soft whispered message that speaks to a deep place in our hearts, but amid the ruts and routines of every day, we frequently lose touch with such truths or we just can’t hear them above the noise of life.

Dan continued the story by admitting that while he waited for the sun to inch a little higher, his mind slipped backward.

He let those anxious thoughts creep back into his consciousness, and before he knew it…the sun had risen…and he had missed the best part of the picture.

Cares, and especially the ones we can’t control, distract us again and again.

You know, many of us fall into whole seasons of life when we miss our sunrises. We take them for granted or we just forget what it is to experience them the way God painted them.

I remember when my first grandchild, Allie, was tiny, before she had to share the stage with siblings or cousins.

I once made a note that when I kept her for days on end, I never missed a sunrise the entire time thanks to Allie’s internal alarm clock.

She greeted every new dawn with such joy and excitement that it was impossible even for a bleary eyed grandmother to complain about the hour.

That little girl seemed to believe she was made for sunrises and needed to see every one.

She is 14 now, and I am happy to report that she now knows that sunrises were made for her by the creative hand of a loving Heavenly Father.

A new school year has begun. That fact no longer affects my life the way it once did. As a student, it meant adjusting to new schedules, new teachers, and new expectations.

As a mother, I think my anxiety was sometimes even greater for my own children because I knew too much about the inevitable pain of growing up!

A few sunrise views and a “Good Morning” conversation with my Heavenly Father would probably have gone a long way in making everything work better for all concerned.

In the avalanche of fall activities and the race that will carry you forward to the end of this season and the beginning of yet another…don’t miss your sunrises. God sends them each day to remind you that there is never a day when you have to live life without Him.

The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. Lamentations 3:22-23.

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