I wonder if penguins ever look up?


Taken at the end of a frozen Antarctic winter, this night-sky photo mesmerizes me. Only penguins and seals and whales live under night skies like this. Most of us will never, with our own eyes, in this life, look upon such a spectacular scene. And so I wonder two things — one sort of silly and one more profound.

I wonder: Do penguins ever look up? From the icy nest, perched with his egg balanced upon his toes, bent over to protect his offspring from biting-cold winds, does the male emperor penguin glance, even with his poor eyesight, toward the shimmering sky? Does the female, as she races to the shore’s edge after months of self-sacrificing starvation, notice the swirls aglow above her head?

Do they ever look up?

But I also wonder in a more serious way. I find myself transfixed by the photo, full of awe at the wisps of glowing stratospheric clouds. And I marvel at this: that the Creator who proclaims His glory in iridescent visions painted across Antarctica’s winter sky would also take time to care for me. For you.

Words from an old Appalachian folk hymn come to mind:

I wonder as I wander out under the sky
How Jesus the Saviour did come for to die
For poor on’ry people like you and like I;
I wonder as I wander out under the sky

I wonder as I wander out under my own night sky, some 9,000 miles away from nesting penguins. Do they look up?  And how, oh how, and why, oh why, did Jesus come to die for ordinary people like you and like I? I wonder as I wander out under the sky.

The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork…Yours is the day, yours also the night; you have established the heavenly lights…

Psalm 19:1, 74:16



About Jill

I'm a wife, mom to three beautiful children, and work as children's ministry director at Redeemer PCA in Athens, GA, a place our family treasures as our church home. It's been thirty years since the Lord saved me, and to this day I'm astounded at His steadfast love shed upon unfaithful me. My hope would be that I might speak and write in ways God would use to soften hearts toward Him, that we would together be enamored by the glorious beauty of Jesus and awakened to His love unimagined. Thanks so much for reading!
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2 Responses to I wonder if penguins ever look up?

  1. Heather Morse says:

    Oh the blessed person that got to see it and take its picture!

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