sunrises, sunsets, stars

Greetings from Outer Banks!!!

beach week has been awesome so far… the weathers been not too hot, not too cold… it’s defintely been way too cold to go swim in the water for long times but it hasn’t stopped us from having tons of fun…

we’re in this place called Corolla, which is part of like this long vertical strip of land in North Carolina… so i have like a 6 minute walk to the beach to the east, and like an 8 minute walk to the bay to the west…   because of this i’ve been trying to catch as many sunsets and sunrises as possible…

the past two days i’ve stayed up all night to go for a sunrise run… then “nap/sleep” til like 2pm, then hit the beach again and just chill… then hang out for a little to catch the sunset at around 8pm… then hit the hot tub at night with all the lights off and see all the stars…  it’s been quite beautiful actually…

– I don’t think i’ll ever forget that first day that i saw the sunrise here… i think it was my first actual time seeing the sun come over the horizon…  it was just way too beautiful to describe in words… after i ran through all the houses and finally reached the beach, i was just overwhelmed by the beauty of it all…

i was just floored, literally… i was left gasping for air… i was still trying to catch my breath from my run, but it was definitely more than that… i was in complete awe and surrender…

as i saw the sun peek its way over the horizon, i think i almost felt a teardrop… i thought to myself, “how on earth could you say NO to that?”  the only response i could have to that was worship… i actually started singing some worship songs out loud… and of course, since it was early in the morning my voice was froggy and i found myself, trying hard to sound good, as if people were around me and i was trying to impress someone…

then i heard a voice strike in my head…. “really joe? really? who are you trying to impress?  don’t you know who i am? it’s just me and you here…”  and i continued to sing… sing… and sing… with a cracky voice and a surrendered heart, i had one of the most awesome times of worship in recent memory…

OBX sunrise

OBX sunrise

i also remember trying to take pictures with this camera… only to keep looking at the picture that i had just taken on the camera, then comparing it to the magnificent view that i was being overwhelmed by, and having an intense feeling of disappointment… the pictures really don’t compare… it just can’t capture the beauty.. the glory of it all…

– now on to sunsets…  sunsets have always been my favorite… there’s nothing better than a dinner in the summer, and walking outside just to be able to catch the sunset… the gradient of color starting in the sky with blue, fading in to gold and pink in the horizon… nothing can beat that…

i think probably the most memorable sunset that I have experienced was the one after the marathon i ran last june… seriously, believe me when i say, “east coast sunrises and west coast sunsets…”  if you haven’t seen a sunset at la jolla beach in San Diego, please do so before your life is over… anyways, i remember being SO tired after the marathon, being sort of overwhelmed by the thought that i had just ran 26.2 miles…  and i just sat there with my best friend on the beach… and saw the sun go down… it was sort of like a perfect ending to a story…

this picture does absolutely NO justice

this picture does absolutely NO justice

i love the idea of a sunset.  it sounds kinda dumb, but I think of sunrises as “God saying hi” and sunsets as “God saying bye”   but theres more to a sunset than just a goodbye…  the sun goes down with a promise of coming back, and it does so in dramatic fashion…

i don’t think its a coincidence that the sun is most beautiful as it gives itself away…

the setting sun… as it does so, i think it kinda tells us to do the same… that we are most beautiful when we give ourselves away…

– and as i’m writing this i’m sitting outside here under the stars, again captivated by the wonder of the moment..

whenever i look at the stars, I feel so small.  there’s just so much out there that I have yet to experience.  so many things that I haven’t seen.  so much of God’s infinite glory that I have yet to grasp in my finite mind…

and i’m just left craving for MORE… more love, more glory, more jesus please

and stars teach me as they twinkle down on me… that the stars are always there… it’s just a matter of whether or not we’re looking up…

well I guess i’ll just leave it at that.  the sky is dark blueish now, can hardly see the stars anymore, birds are chirping… which means—got a sunrise to catch in 45 minutes.  kind of excited. once again. til next time.

oh. almost forgot.  P.S. — while i was writing this i’ve been listening to the new Hillsong United “A Cross// The Earth” CD… and I got a very good first impression out of it.  go check it out.

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