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The Glow

Tonight as I drove home, I saw an extraordinarily bright orange-yellow glow right on the eastern horizon, over the town of Bastrop, Texas, which suffered from such severe wildfires this summer. It was, of course, an unusually large, bright moonrise through a veil of clouds that magnified and dispersed the haunting light.

Yet for several miles down the road, over and down hills, hidden by trees and the ever teasing cloud it was very hard to tell for sure whether the glow brought beauty or disaster.

The Chinese character for our word ‘crisis’ is a combination of two characters: one that means ‘danger’ and one that means ‘opportunity.’

So many things catch our attention in our daily lives, hinting at something out of the ordinary, but whether it bodes ill or well is often not obvious right away. As often happens, to find out which we must go out of our intended path, just as Moses caught a glimpse of a strange glow in the folds of Sinai. He found God there.

I worry sometimes that we are kept so busy and ragged in life today, that if we notice a glow at all, do we have the strength, energy, or even curiosity to seek its meaning out? Or do our stress and chaos keep us from being the first to find a new blessing or sound the alarm of impending danger?

Daily crises abound and flourish so we are constantly in crisis-management mode. I wonder how often we bid the burning bush to take a number.


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