Someone who has never seen the green flash might think it’s a myth. It isn’t. If you’re watching a sunrise or sunset and the conditions are right you may see it. The sky should be clear enough and the horizon should be flat and distant. Watching the sun over a nearby hill or through buildings or trees will not do it. The times I’ve seen the green flash have always been over the ocean. I thought that the phenomenon was caused by the sun shining through the water, but in fact it’s just some magic from the sunlight being scattered in the atmosphere. At sunset you can see just a little green blip just at the moment that the sun disappears.
Sunrise is even more spectacular. I have always loved the anticipation of a sunrise. The sky becomes lighter and you can tell right where the sun will come up. Then just for a moment so small it seems like a dream in the blink of an eye you see it. There is a distinct green light as if the sun is green but then the bright white-yellow sun is already up and the moment is gone.
One evening I was at a park by the beach in Kihei. The setting sun was huge over the ocean. I took two year old Harrison with me and held him by water’s edge and we watched the sun set lower. The haze in the air dampened the sunlight enough that you could watch, but I hoped that it was clear enough to maybe see the green flash in a few minutes.
The sound of the playground and traffic faded, replaced by ocean waves on the rocks. The sun got lower and I held Harrison and we watched the sun seem to touch the water. The bright disk shrunk down quickly then. I held my breath as it was just a brilliant sliver and then it vanished. Then my breath escaped me. About a quarter mile out in our line of sight a humpback whale jumped completely out of the water and splashed back in.
I didn’t see the green flash. But in my life that was the most spectacular thing I’ve ever seen.
This is the Earth we live on. It’s a world of pain and fear and earthquakes and tsunami waves. In the shadow of the recent world events from political unrest to capricious nature it’s hard not to stay up all night worrying.
But one evening some 15 years ago I had a brief glimpse of the face of God. The splash from the whale was as big as a house. As I saw it I couldn’t think of anything else but our creator.
Anyone who has seen the green flash will know it is not a myth. If you can take my word for that then take my word for this: It was not just that magical evening I felt the presence of God. He’s with me now as I write this and you as you read this. The Earth we live on will pass away but His love for us is forever.