I guess I've technically skipped a day of writing, but to be honest it still feels like day 2. We've been travelling nonstop since 2:00 yesterday afternoon, and after an 8 hour flight to London, a 2.5 hour layover, an hour-long flight to Cork, Ireland, and then a 1.5-hour bus ride to our hotel in Killarney, we're finally here. Flopped on our beds. Vegging out and watching The Voice of Ireland. Haven't eaten, haven't slept. There's been too much to see, and our touring hasn't even begun.
I realize a detailed description of our 20+ hours of travel wouldn't be the most riveting thing to read, but seeing as that's really all there is to report on, I'll do my best to give you the most enlightening moments.
For starters, I'm not a fan of night flights. I'm a window-seat hog, and when I'm just so lucky to get the prized seat, my face is glued to the window for most of the flight. But this time, we flew through the night. It was pitch black, nothing to see, just the knowledge that we were crossing the Atlantic Ocean.
I read, I listened to music, and I tried to sleep for the first 5ish hours of the trip, but the real joy began the moment I opened my eyes groggily and noticed the faint glow on the horizon... meaning we had met up with the sunrise. I was so excited as the clouds slowly grew lighter, and my spirits lifted dramatically. I could see the ocean! Looking down on the patterns of the currents and the waves was a crazy feeling. Pressing close to the window, I looked backwards over the expanse of cloud we had just flown over. I thought about North America placed just beyond the curvature of the globe as I was seeing it. I thought about how small this world really is- that we can travel from one side to the other in less than a day.
I had my screen set to the map of our journey, but this map also included night and day. The map showed where in the world it was dark, and where in the world it was light. I stared at the diagram and thought about how interesting it is. How as soon as the light of the sun hides from one part of the world, some province on the other side is waking up. I thought about how as one side of the world has quieted for night, the other half is bustling to work. And I realized- the sun is always shining, somewhere.
As we approached London and were soaring above the clouds, the blue globe we were in was gorgeous. In every direction below us lay vast prairies of white, creamy cloud. And even though the sun was blinding and the sky was clearest blue, I knew that beneath the layer of cloud, it was surely overcast and rainy. We couldn't see a hint of ground. I could predict what was going on below: dark, rainy, chilly days. And then I wondered, "I wonder if the people down there can predict what's going on up here?" Do they realize that just above their dark and cloudy sky lies the clearest and purest and brightest expanse of air. And I realized, once again- the sun is always shining, somewhere.
Even in the darkest days, the sun is shining, somewhere. Even in the blackest nights, the afternoon sun is beaming, somewhere. Even when the skies are gray and expressionless for weeks on end... the sun is still shining. Somewhere above the gray. Somewhere beyond the edge of the night. The sun is always shining.
And I thought about the darkness of our world. I thought about Brussels. Paris. Syria. I thought about the Christians who are being persecuted and the refugees receiving no compassion. I thought about the orphans and the widows who nobody are noticing. The suffering ones who are finding no aid.
But then I realized. The Son is always shining. Somewhere beyond our view or somewhere behind our sadness- He's got his eye on things. He never sleeps and he never leaves. People ask if there's any hope for this world. And without Christ, the answer is "No." But for those who know Him and love Him and serve Him, His Light is exactly what our hope is set in. There's nothing He can't see, we just can't always see Him. Sometimes we don't realize we've turned our backs, and sometimes we don't realize we've let other priorities cloud our vision.
But the Son is always. Shining.