Arizona Sunrise
Photo taken 2/26/2014
I love a good sunrise.

My favorites are the ones that defy description and photography both.
The ones that tug at my soul and demand a moment (or twenty) of awestruck wonder.
The ones that make me feel like it was created for me specifically for that moment by the lover of my soul as part of his continued efforts to woo me...
To draw me deeper and further into the relationship we already have.

Sunrises might be part of what keeps me here in Arizona.
Maybe I'm just waiting to see how the maker of the universe is going to outdo himself next time around.

Easter morning, after a traditional Sunrise service and breakfast, and before Sunday morning worship, I found myself sitting in the classroom where I normally co-lead our youth bible study with just a notebook, a pen, and a lot of thoughts about sunrises.
Well, a lot of thoughts about the story of what happened that first Sunday morning after Jesus was crucified, too - long after the skies went dark, and the earth shook, and the veil was torn.

Sometimes, it's hard for me to get past that part.
I always find myself wondering, after moments in my life where something happens that seems to shake the world off of its proverbial axis...
How do I move beyond this?
Because the weight of the way things shift after those moments has a way of reeling me in and sucking away my joy.
It has a way of turning life into something to be endured rather than cherished, at least for a while.

And every time I go back to that story - the crucifixion story - my imagination won't let me see Jesus's family or his followers experiencing anything less.

But whenever I get to the part of the story where it is Sunday morning, and Mary Magdalene and Peter and John have been to the tomb where Jesus's body was supposed to be laying, I always try to imagine what the sunrise was like that morning.
After Peter and John went back to their homes.
After the angels appeared and told her what had happened.
After she spoke with Jesus and headed back to tell the disciples.

What I try to imagine always fails, though.
I think it fails because of what sunrises have come to mean to me.
They are more than the birth of a new day; they're evidence that God didn't shrink back from his promises.
The light of day made known his word is good.

Not much in the world could be more breathtaking than that.