Without words, I have been watching for centuries – simply watching. From a clear sky I watched the first ones as they left the garden, just as the cool of the evening turned to night, holding each other and blindly weeping as they stumbled down the hill. Those were the first tears, and they were the shape of all that has followed. It was not time for me to react, but I saw how their pain was part of an infection that turned the whole world drear and miserable.
There came a day when my sight was obscured by more than darkness, when great grey clouds covered the earth, and the rain fell and fell, till you would have thought it was impossible for there to be any more water left. And when the clouds finally cleared the whole world was awash, with only that little boat, bobbing on the water, containing all that was left of humanity. Within a year, it was the rainbow’s turn to speak.
I was there the night that God called Abram to come out and count the stars. His gaze passed across me as he looked up in the clear desert night, awed by our overwhelming numbers. He did not notice me in any particular way, it was not my turn, I was content to wait the millennia until God’s appointed moment. Why are humans always so impatient that they cannot wait for God’s beautiful time? Is it because death is always breathing down their necks, whispering in their ears that the time is short and they dare not wait? Is death always louder in their lives than God’s own words?
I have watched and I have seen, and if a star could weep I would have shed great tears of fire for the folly and the ruin that humanity has wrought. I have seen them give their lives and their children’s lives to gods who were no gods, but spirits of evil, seeking only to devour. I have seen famine and disease and pestilence; I have seen war and rape and torture, betrayal, mockery and indifference. But I am a star, and not subject to the tyranny of Death, I am free to listen to the music of God, the chords of glory that undergird the universe, and unlike the humans I know that all these horrors are transitory things; in a little while they shall vanish, overcome by the triumph of everlasting love.
And then it was my turn to speak – no, not with words but with signifying action: to blaze with a great light and to travel across the sky from east to west at a precise speed to reach a precise place at a precise time. As usual, the humans didn’t get it quite right, stopping off at Jerusalem on the way, but God had providentially known even this, and in the end it all went exactly as He ordained.
This was the thing He had created me for. I had seen the birth of Death, but now I was the herald of the birth of the one who would strike Death dead, the one who would, in due course, willingly enter into death, and shatter it from the inside out. God Himself would do this impossible thing. For who else could? Without words I had watched the drama of human pain and futility unfold, but now the Word Himself had been made flesh, constraining Himself to grow within a woman’s body, and the heavens themselves moved to announce this wonder.
My great light has dimmed now, but I await another Day, another entry of Almighty God Himself into the world that He has made. Then there will be a whole New Creation and sin and death will be banished forever. And while I wait I remember how it all began, way back in the very beginning, when the morning stars sang together before the face of God. One day we will have words again.