It's just dawning on us that this Covid-19 pandemic may confine us longer than we imagined and we feel like we are fishing in the dark and not catching anything.
When someone says, “Hey, it just dawned on me….” they are confessing to having a thought cross their mind that now has some significance or special meaning. We use the illustration of the light bulb coming on to symbolize the birth of an idea, revelation, understanding, or an epiphany. ( for which I’d rather use cymbals crashing )
I love to get up early, especially in the summer, and sit outside facing east with a sweater on and a cup of coffee to keep my hands warm. The hour just after the sun breaks is called the ‘golden hour’ by photographers who have to be on location before dawn to catch what the first rays reveal or reflect. In Toronto I used to sit on the front stoop before dawn. I would hear a drone in the distance as the first plane was coming in to land at the airport right at six.
In Alberta, far Northwest of Ontario, our sunrises go from early in the summer to late in the winter over a twelve month period. Winter days are so short that people go to work and come home in the dark. In the summer, kids are still playing in the parks at ten in the evening as dusk comes on. This is why we have three layers of window coverings in our bedroom that faces east. A blind, black-out drapes, and decorative lace curtains that all open and close for maximum options.
My illustration is a reminder of the time our family rented a little cottage in Banff for a few days away. On at least one day we would go to the hot springs and let the smelly rotten-egg Sulphur water take toxins out and relax us to the point of exhaustion by day's end. At least once we would splurge and go out to a steakhouse for a nice dinner, also making for a good night’s sleep. I was the oldest, a teenager in rebellion and wanting independence most of the time. I didn't really think these family outings were that cool. Dad announced on our last visit there that he was going fishing early in the morning and who ever wanted to come with him, had to be up and ready.
I decided it might be an adventure to experience. I slept with my ear listening for when Dad got up and jumped into my clothes. We drove the car over to the river where Dad had arranged to rent a small aluminium row boat. It was dark in the town because even though the sun had come up, the mountains are so high that it takes awhile for the sun to shine over them. As we rowed, mostly along the shore, Dad explained that the fish bite better when there’s no sun to create a shadow from the boat. He also made me be quiet and talk in hushed tones so we wouldn't scare the fish.
I can’t remember if he had bait or just fishing lures. I do remember how calm and peaceful it was. Suddenly it dawned on me that they would be going back to India and leaving me after graduation. Having my Dad all to myself and letting him share a passion he didn't get to do very often was a memory I knew I wanted to keep. He kept saying how good this fish was going to taste when we got back to our cabin and fried it up for breakfast. I frowned at that knowing he might be the only one excited at that prospect, especially when we had all discussed having breakfast at a famous local pancake house.
No matter what happens at night, dawn is going to bring a new day. Jesus walked with fishermen and in the New Day after his resurrection, He visited his disciples who had gone fishing all night and caught nothing. They didn't recognize him as He told them to cast their nets on the other side of the boat. They caught more than they knew what to do with, almost tearing their nets. Then it dawned on them. The miracle opened their eyes to recognize Jesus on the shore.
(I personally think he had them throw their nets on the side of the boat that had no shadow after what my Dad said, but I could be wrong.) Jesus knew that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, so he invited them to the shore where he already had fish cooked for them to enjoy. He used this time to engage with them and settle some issues from the trauma of the crucifixion, especially with Peter who had denied him three times. John 21.
After the last denial, when the cock crowed, it dawned on Peter that what Jesus had warned him about had come to pass. He had wept bitterly. Some things dawn on us to bring truth like realizing the short time I had with my Dad. Some bring regret, that we can repent for, even as Peter did when he affirmed his love for his Messiah, to leave fishing and feed sheep (followers of Jesus).
May we use this time wisely as we wait for the dawn of the day when we are free to hug, hold hands, and it will finally dawn on us that the pandemic has past!
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Linda McKendry, renaissance girl accused of doing too many things. Loves to educate, motivate, inspire, and empower (entertain).