Chasing the Moon

Recently, I’ve developed a silly and almost disturbing new hobby. I came into it completely by accident. Recently, I’ve had a deep, urgent, and almost primal need to take photos of the moon.

Can’t you just see me? I go out to walk the dog—usually in an old t-shirt and some funky capri-type pajama bottoms—and I see the moon. And I just have to take pictures of it. I grab my pocket-sized digital camera and in the flimsiest flip-flops I own, I begin creeping through the crunchy leaves behind the empty house next to me and then the house beyond. By now, I’ve realized that I’m not invisible and that quite possibly, those new neighbors I haven’t met yet are eyeing me suspiciously through their back windows, wondering whether I’m dangerous enough to call 911 about.

The moon you see pictured above was taken in just such circumstances by yours truly, about two nights ago. Thankfully, the new neighbors did not call 911.

I can’t explain this need. And actually, now that I think about it, it isn’t just recently that I’ve felt this need. I have moon pictures cluttering up my hard drive and thumb drives from lots of other nights. I find the moon to be so captivating. On nights like last night and the night before, it’s really hard to believe that that beautiful, shiny beacon of hope in the sky is really just a big ol’ dark, cold rock hanging there. It has absolutely no light of its own.

I identify with the moon a lot. I’m a big, dark, cold rock. Years of abuse and pain have helped to make me that way. I’ve hardened myself and set up all kinds of defensive mechanisms to keep from getting hurt anymore. I’m pretty selfish, actually. I have a lot of wrong attitudes and wrong thoughts. I can be incredibly insensitive and thoughtless. I’ve been known to be critical, judgmental, and unforgiving. I’m ugly and pitted and cold.

Until the sun shines on me.

Okay, I just cringed while I was typing that, because I think that to a lot of people that will come across as trite or cliché. And maybe it is, but it’s also true. The past has made me into that hard, cold, ugly rock. And there is nothing I can do to change that—the past or what it’s made me into. Believe me, I’ve tried. I tried to be good enough, but when I couldn’t, that just made me more depressed and angry. I tried to anesthetize myself, but nothing could make me numb enough. Not cigarettes or alcohol or sex or pills. And really, all of these things just made me uglier and darker and harder and gave me more scars to try to heal from and hide from.

Sometimes, I see people around me sinking into the dark and the cold and I ache for them. How do they live without the sun? Because living without the sun almost killed me. Still today, every time I forget where the sun is, I begin to die a little. And so seeing others around me, hurting and dark and cold, it makes me physically hurt. Because I know that there’s a way out of the dark. I know that there’s a refuge from the cold…

And so I chase the moon and I try to reflect the sun, sometimes in my pajamas and flip-flops, in my neighbors’ backyards.

About Sarah Salter


  1. Nothing wrong with a cliche Sarah. I think this post tells a lot, not just about you but about who we need to be as Christians. We all need to draw our light from the Son. The moon shines not on its own but (if I understand correctly) because it has absorbed light from the sun. Nothing wrong with that analogy in our lives. Praying that you will continue to reflect His light in your life.

  2. Sarah Salter says:

    Thank you, Bill. I try to be aware of the cliches in my posts and I try to avoid being trite. I know I have readers that are not church-going folks and my goal is to write in a way that they can identify with it, too, and draw something from it. I couldn’t avoid the cliche in this instance. Thank you for your thoughts here. You’re always an encouragement!

  3. The moon reflects the light of the sun… another interesting tidbit I learned in High School Physics… When you “see” the moon at midday, most of the times it is actually a reflection of the moon caused by the refraction of light upon the earth’s oceans… The exception would be during an eclipse.

    Aren’t we all a cliche?

    For we all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. Romans 3:23

    4But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. 6 And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7 in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. 8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. Ephesians 2: 4- 10

  4. Sarah Salter says:

    Thank you, Dusty!

  5. Not to be contrary (which I have been known to be at times), but you’re not the same–you’re a brand new creation who goes from glory to glory. You’re a heck of a lot more than cold rock! What He has created you and all of us for is beyond imagination and limitations. He is the God who restores and the God of the impossible. I know this post doesn’t represent the full picture of how you see yourself in Christ, but I felt like I needed to encourage you. He sees every hurt and scar and He heals as we give Him the access through our surrender. Ah, I could go on and on, but you know all this! Be encouraged that you are a treasured possession, firmly grounded in His hands. 🙂

    PS I’m glad that the big ‘reveal’ for this post wasn’t that you are attracted to the moon because you’re really a werewolf. I wouldn’t know what to do with that. 🙂

  6. Sarah Salter says:

    Thanks, Jason. You’re 100% correct. 🙂

    And no, I’m not a werewolf. And I wouldn’t admit it if I was. 🙂

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