Eclipsed By Glory

Tomorrow morning the sun will be eclipsed by the shadow of the moon. Scores of people across the nation are converging in the path of totality, getting prepared to witness the celestial event.

The total solar eclipse reminds me of a few metaphorical truths:

Just as the light of the sun will be darkened by the moon, a spiritual darkness has been threatening to overtake the Son’s light on the earth. As I’ve written before, we as Christians must do all we can to keep our minds and hearts focused on Jesus, and He will give us the strength, wisdom and courage to continue shining the light of the Son into the darkness of hate, ignorance, pride and selfishness. Living for Christ, our lives are to be eclipsed by His glory and love; for all we do, are, and have is from Him, and so we joyfully share that with others. “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven .” Matthew 5:16 (KJV)

When struggles try to dim our view, making it hard to see around the next corner, that means we’ve taken our eyes off of Jesus! “I am the Light of the world. Whoever follows Me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” John 8:12

Here is a poem about staying focused on Jesus the Son:


The Son is the center of my life,
and just as the sun above glows,
With each passing hour of day
love for my Savior grows.
At the break of day, my soul rejoices
along with the sparrow’s song,
And at high noon, I still sing a tune
for His light in my heart shines strong.
Then at the day’s close, the ember yet glows
– my soul’s fire brightly aflame;
As the sun sets, the sky blood red,
I give praise to His holy name.
For in the Son, my sins set low,
nevermore to be seen;
At the dawn of day, my mistakes far away,
I begin again wholly clean.
Following the light of the Son,
I shine for all to see;
Forever to the Father and Son above
All honor and glory be.

©Ladeena Ashley

The eclipse also reminds me that without the shadows – either of the moon or the dark of night – we wouldn’t appreciate the the light as much. That’s why when those who’ve had especially hard-knock lives come to the full knowledge of God’s love for them, their experiences make them even more credible and powerful witnesses of His mercy and grace to those who are still in the darkness.

Finally, though the moon will darken the sun for a period of time, it will not shade it forever. As followers of Christ, we have a confident hope that though the prince of this world works to fill it with sin and darkness, his days on earth are numbered. Ultimately, the Son will emerge victorious when He returns once again in the clouds! No one but the Father knows the day or hour (Matthew 24:36), but the conquering Light is coming!

No matter where you are, whether you’ll get to personally (safely) experience the eclipse or merely see it on a screen somewhere, I hope and pray you take these truths to heart and be encouraged!

Blessings to you, this day and always!

©Ladeena Ashley
2017 All Rights Reserved (blog content and photos)

God Sees Me (& You)

We all have a story to tell. Whether from humble beginnings or an immense wealth of knowledge and ambition. My story would definitely be described as the former. Though at times I wonder how God could use my simple faith to encourage others, I think it may be the simplicity of my faith that is so valuable and uplifting.

My Story

Without going into too much detail, one part of my story involves chronic digestive issues. I was diagnosed with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and lactose intolerance back in 1999. Then in 2011 I had surgery to remove my stone-filled gall bladder, and have had problems with many foods ever since. This week I’ve been struggling through a nasty IBS flare-up that has my insides screaming and my head throbbing. My severely limited diet has been even more curtailed, leaving me tired and a bit frustrated. Thankfully, the Lord keeps me looking at the positives, like: “Hey, it helps me keep my girlish figure!”

Being among the trees and squirrels helps, too. Last night, after a particularly sticky summer day, I decided to stretch my legs and cool off by heading out for an evening walk in a nearby park. What began as the expression of my perennial awe of nature turned into yet another reminder of God’s purpose and care for me. (Apparently I need lots of reassurance!)

“Late Summer Evening”

The night affords a mystic beauty:
Towering trees shrouded in shadow,
Muted greens aglow from the city.
Gnarled shapes cast upon the meadow.
A hidden choir of crickets throng.
Heat of day now a balmy breeze,
Stars, like sequins, shimmer a song;
A wispy wind rustles the leaves.
Trunks and branches, tangled and dark
inspire this evening reverie.
A late summer stroll through the park
with nature and humanity.
Different perspective in moonlight:
Yet God sees me as if it’s day.
Comfort to know I’m in His sight
where the light and shade interplay.

© Ladeena Ashley

Always Surrounded

I love the way I feel in nature. Day or night, there’s always something to marvel at. But best of all, no matter where I am, God sees me – sees us – and loves us. His purpose and plan are perfect (Psalm 18:30)! We are all surrounded by the shadows (sin and pain) and light (God’s goodness and love), and He walks with us, strengthening us through all of it! When He looks at the world, all of the shadows and darkness are light to Him (Psalm 139:11-12). He sees us and knows us better than we know ourselves. We cannot run from His presence, but I, for one, would never want to. God has always been faithful to me, and He’s the only reason I’ve made it this far.

© Ladeena Ashley
2016 All Rights Reserved (content & blog photos)