I love sunsets. My eyes yearn to drink in each picture painted in the sky until it fades from sight, and I always leave craving more. This may sound bizarre, but the way I scratch the itch of my craving is by “chasing” sunsets.
I don’t have access to a spaceship (yet), so the only way I can do this is by following sunsets in my car, or by running after them on foot. No matter how strenuous the chase, I always try to get to the perfect spot for watching the last rays of light die out on the horizon, wreathing the sky in jeweled fire.
During a lengthy run this week, I began to notice a shift in the light and was overcome with excitement because I knew a sunset was coming. I lengthened my stride and managed to catch the spectacular vision of burning orange, red and pink outlined in blue from a seat in the grass beyond a church parking lot.
As I sat there, bathed in the dying light, I was struck with thoughts of how limited my time is here, though some moments seem to stretch on forever. That is the rub of this season…limited time, yet moments that seem to span lifetimes.
I was forced to wonder how I could possibly make an impact for God’s kingdom when time is so unpredictable. How can we serve when the parameters of our service seem to slip through our fingers? Like chasing sunsets, serving God never happens in the same way or in the same amount of time.
John 6:27 says, “Do not work for the food that perishes, but for the food that endures for eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. For it is on Him that God the Father has set His seal.”
There is beauty and meaning all around us, but if we loose sight of Christ in that meaning, then it becomes a sunset, momentarily beautiful, but forgotten in an instant.
Christ makes our actions eternal, even if those actions or vocations are only for a season. This is a lesson I must constantly remember as I participate in the Nashville Fellows Program. It is easy to lose sight of the fact, no matter where we are in life, that seasons must come to an end. What we must hold onto is that if we pursue Jesus in those seasons, then they become part of a sunset that lasts in beauty forever, regardless of the fact that their earthly timetable expires.
“Do not work for the food that perishes, but for the food that endures for eternal life…” can be a difficult truth to follow, but by sitting in it and letting the Spirit of God transform us, we will indeed be transformed. A sunset itself may give us a glimpse of eternity’s beauty, but if we chase after the beauty that endures, there is no limit to what we will see.