I hope everyone had an excellent Christmas and has a Happy New Year. This past year seemed to zoom by. It seems like the older I get, the faster the time goes.
Speaking of things flying by, this summer I went to NASA’s website and signed up for their Spot the Station text message alerts. You enter where you live, and they let you know when the space station is visible in your location as it zips by at a little over 17,000 miles per hour.
I’ve received several alerts since then, but it’s never been a suitable time to see it since it flew by in the wee hours of the morning. The first part of December, I received an alert that it was flying by at 6:38 p.m. and would be visible for six minutes. I stood outside and looked in the direction the station would appear.
I live a little outside the city, so the light pollution isn’t bad, and it was easy to see it as it zipped by. It appears as a bright light, and it took me a few seconds to pick it out.
A week later, I received another text that it was flying by at 6:17 p.m. This time, I had just dropped my daughter off at church for a youth group activity. She stood outside with me to watch it and a friend of hers and her friend’s dad watched it with us. We were in the city this time, so there was more light pollution, but we could see it.
As we watched it, I thought about how if you want to see the station you have to be in a place that doesn’t have too much light pollution. I think because we were standing in the church parking lot I thought about how Jesus would separate Himself from his disciples. He would find a place free of mental and emotional pollution so He could spot the Spirit. Get the mind of God.
I thought about how I have a set place where I read my Bible and pray so I can get myself in the right mindset to focus on God. A place to tone down the mental, emotional, personal pollution. A place to diminish the distractions so I can spot the Spirit, so to speak.
I also don’t need any alerts to tell me He’s in the area. He’s always there I just have to get in that place of reduced pollution and distractions and get my focus right.
At the beginning of every new year, people make resolutions for the year. My resolution for this year is to be more aware of when I’m letting the things of this world pollute and distract me. These past couple of years it’s been easy to let that happen with Covid and a lot of other things. This year I want to be more intentional about keeping all that to a minimum so I can always spot the Spirit. See where He’s working in my life.
Another thing about the space station is its orbit and how fast it must go to stay in orbit. I said earlier the station travels at a little over 17,000 miles per hour. It must travel that fast to stay in orbit. It orbits around 260 miles above the Earth, but Earth’s gravity pulls on it. Over time it experiences orbital decay and periodically must fire its rockets to boost it into the proper altitude. There’s also a thin layer of atmosphere and it experiences drag that works to slow it down and pull it out of orbit.
As a Christian, the cares of this world, the temptations, the pollution of this fallen world work to cause spiritual decay. I need a spiritual boost from time to time or I’ll slow down in my walk with God. I’ll lose altitude and eventually crash and burn.
Going to church on Sunday, going to my life group, daily Bible reading, and prayer are where I get my spiritual boost. When I’m consistent with those, my spiritual altitude or attitude is where it needs to be. Sometimes I miss a Sunday, or life group, or skip a day of Bible reading and prayer. I know if I miss too many of those in a row; I feel the spiritual drag.
So, this year, let’s be more intentional about what we need to do to spot the Spirit and keep ourselves in the proper spiritual orbit.
If you’re a space geek like me and don’t mind looking like an idiot staring at the sky waiting for a bright light to go zipping by, you can go to this link https://spotthestation.nasa.gov to sign up for text or email notifications.