To­tal So­lar Eclipse God’s Way Of En­ter­tain­ing Us


I en­joyed the ar­ti­cles about the eclipse by Kent Marts and Janelle Jessen, and as of this writ­ing I look for­ward to read­ing David Cater’s re­port. I can­not hope to top their re­ports; nev­er­the­less, I will tell a por­tion of our story.

Carol and I were on our 51st wed­ding an­niver­sary trip and de­cided to visit our daugh­ter, Dar­lene, and her fam­ily in Aurora, Colo., then visit the Rocky Moun­tain Na­tional Park just out­side Estes Park, Colo. But we timed our visit to co­in­cide with the to­tal so­lar eclipse.

We had seen par­tial so­lar eclipses and sev­eral to­tal lu­nar eclipses; but never a to­tal so­lar eclipse, so we didn’t know what to ex­pect.

Dar­lene and her son, Brian, went with us as we drove three and a half hours north of Den­ver. Ar­riv­ing at Glendo, Wyo., around 4:30 a.m. on Mon­day, Aug. 21, we eas­ily found a place to park in an open grassy area, and took a nap in the car. Dar­lene and I awoke a cou­ple of hours later and walked to the lake in time to take some great sun­rise pic­tures over the wa­ter.

It was a warm day with planes fly­ing over­head and hot-air bal­loons lazily hov­er­ing nearby; and the count­down for the to­tal eclipse be­gan around 10:22 a.m. Our an­tic­i­pa­tion grew.

Hun­dreds of peo­ple, in­clud­ing pro­fes­sional pho­tog­ra­phers, had their tele­scopes and cam­eras ready: many were set up on tripods, but most of us sim­ply held cam­eras in our hands.

I took sev­eral pic­tures with the cam­era point­ing di­rectly at the full sun with no fil­ter, but shot most of the pic­tures with the so­lar-view­ing lens cov­er­ing the cam­era lens. I took a pic­ture ev­ery 10 min­utes un­til the eclipse was near 90 per­cent, then changed bat­tery and be­gan tak­ing quite a few.

It was light enough to read with only 10 per­cent sun­light, but it got dark quickly af­ter that. Then, as Kent Marts said: “BAM! Dark­ness!” And with the sud­den dark­ness, the tem­per­a­ture sud­denly dropped, mak­ing the hot-air bal­loons rise.

As noon-day bright­ness turned mid­night dark, hun­dreds of peo­ple shouted, cheered, and cried. I didn’t ex­pect the sud­den emo­tion that swept over me. All I could do and say was, “Oooooooooh Wow! God, you are amaz­ing to ar­range this kind of phe­nom­ena.” I took turns looking at the corona and tak­ing pic­tures: tak­ing 15 shots of the corona dur­ing black­out.

Then, again, “BAM!” The light came back on — but dif­fer­ently.

As the eclipse was in­creas­ing, the sun­light was dull-yel­low; but the in­stant the sun­light reap­peared, it was a bright, di­a­mond, crys­tal color! What a sur­prise! I’ll never for­get it. Again, very emo­tional. Cheer­ing, yelling, cry­ing spon­ta­neously erupted from the crowd.

We didn’t wait for the eclipse to un­wind. At about 20 per­cent, we packed up and be­gan head­ing out … but an­other sur­prise popped up.

It took only 31/2 hours to drive from Den­ver and park on the grass at Glendo Park; but it took 4 hours to get from the grassy spot to I-25. Then it took an­other 2 hours to drive 26 miles south. That is where we es­caped the un­end­ing line of red break-lights and headed east for Scotts Bluff, Neb. Af­ter a snack in Scotts Bluff, we headed south, get­ting back to Aurora just af­ter mid­night; but it was much bet­ter than the pro­jected 6 a.m. if we stayed on I-25.

As I write this Re­flec­tion, I am re­view­ing the pic­tures I took. Some­one told me that tak­ing a pic­ture di­rectly at the sun with­out a fil­ter would hurt the cam­era. I am not brag­ging, but it didn’t af­fect my Nikon 9900. My wife also shot the sun di­rectly with her Nikon 9400, and they both con­tinue to work won­der­fully.

We are now looking for­ward to watch­ing the next to­tal so­lar eclipse in Lit­tle Rock in 2024.

God didn’t have to put the moon in such an or­bit that we would have lu­nar and so­lar eclipses. But He must have thought ahead and said, “I’ll make life in­ter­est­ing for my spe­cial cre­ation — man. Not only will I give him an­i­mals to make life in­ter­est­ing; I’ll also show my cre­ativ­ity in the heav­ens for him to en­joy.” Psalm 19:1-2 says, “The heav­ens pro­claim the glory of God. The skies dis­play his crafts­man­ship. Day af­ter day they con­tinue to speak; night af­ter night they make him known.”

God is an awe­some God. He loves you and de­sires to have a liv­ing re­la­tion­ship with you through Je­sus Christ.


This im­age of the Aug. 21 so­lar eclipse was taken in Glendo, Wyo.

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