A pitched tent belonging to a gold miner camped in the Colorado Rockies in 1859 with the aurora lights in the background. 

“For the LORD God is our sun and our shield. He gives us grace and glory. The LORD will withhold no good thing from those who do what is right.” – Ps. 84:11 

Gold miners camped in the Colorado Rockies woke up and began sorting their preparations for breakfast.

The light outside their tents looked as if they’d overslept.

But, unknown to them, it was daylight at midnight.

At the same time, telegraph operators back East heard their telegraph machines tap spontaneously without a human hand. Then, the paper in the machines caught fire and combusted.

Worldwide communications by telegraph went completely dead.

In addition, the aurora lights lit more than just the Earth’s poles. The northern lights (aurora borealis) were witnessed as far south as Cuba and Honolulu, Hawaii. According to National Geographic, the southern lights (aurora australis) were seen as far north as Santiago, Chile.

Some people thought it was the end of the world.

It was midnight, Friday, September 2, 1859


The Exploding Sun

The sketch Richard Carrington drew of the sun’s surface on September 1, 1859.

The day before the Colorado gold miners awaked at midnight, amateur British astronomer Richard Carringtonan artist and skywatcher from Redhill, England, sketched sunspots using specialized eye filters.

Carrington sketched the sun a little before noon on Thursday, September 1.

Suddenly, a flash of light blinded Carrington as he looked at the sun.

Carrington later described what he saw as a “white light flare.” The duration of the light Carrington witnessed lasted five minutes.

Carrington had just become the first human witness to a Coronal Mass Ejection (CME). A CME is a significant expulsion of plasma and magnetic field from the corona (e.g., the sun’s atmosphere).



The amount of matter expelled by the CME Carrington observed was massive.

Coronal Mass Ejections travel to Earth much slower than solar flares. Flares are bursts of electromagnetic radiation that travel at the speed of light, reaching Earth in just over 8 minutes.

Massive CMEs like the one that Carrington witnessed can take 13 hours to several days to hit Earth.

It took Carrington’s CME 17.6 hours to hit Earth.

I write from a biblical and historical perspective to encourage you to trust the Creator.

The Carrington Event of September 1-2, 1859

The highly charged particles ejected by the Coronal Mass Ejection became known as the Carrington Event.

The Carrington event greatly disturbed the people who lived in 1859. They honestly thought the world was ending. Though the world didn’t come to an end, newly invented technology came to a sudden stop (the teletype, electric lights, etc.).

NASA estimates a similar CME in the 21st century would be catastrophic.

At least TWO TRILLION dollars worth of damage to the world’s electrical infrastructure and at least a decade to repair the damage.

By comparison, Hurricane Katrina cost $125 billion.

Solar scientists now estimate that there is a growing likelihood that a CME the size of the 1859 Carrington Event will hit Earth during the next decade.

A CME the size of the Carrington Event in the 2020s would be catastrophic.

If a Sun Black Swan Event occurred in 2024, your life would be affected in this manner:

A geomagnetic storm will cause anomalies and disruptions to the modern conveniences we’ve come to rely on. According to the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC), significant electrical outages may have cascading effects:

  • The water and wastewater distribution systems are shut down.
  • Perishable foods and medications are destroyed.
  • Heating/air conditioning and electrical lighting systems go offline.
  • Computer systems, telephone systems, and communications systems (including disruptions in airline flights, satellite networks, and GPS services)
  • Communication nationally and internally fails.
  • Electronic banking will be impossible.
  • Public transportation systems will shut down.
  • Fuel distribution systems and fuel pipelines will cease.
  • All electrical systems that do not have backup power come to an end.

In essence, your life and the lives of your loved ones change.

Preparations for a Sun Black Swan

You’re not in control. Trust the One who is like the Sun.

We can learn some lessons from the 1859 Carrington Event, especially in preparation for a Sun Black Swan.

8 Steps to Take

  1. Trust the LORD – God uses natural Black Swan events to humble proud people.
  2. Live without electricity – do you have access to light, money, and food that is not dependent on electricity? Gardens, metals (currency), stored water, and solar-powered flashlights work without electricity.
  3. Communicate mechanically – Consider “walkie-talkies” that are EMP-resistant.
  4. Travel locally -Travel will be local for at least a season after a CM. Consider having bikes or older vehicles dependent on mechanical engineering, not electrical engineering. Do you have such options?
  5. Store food – Any family who has not stored up food for six months is not being the proverbial ant that is wise and considers the future. Joseph, a type of Christ in the Old Testament, worked for years to prepare for a coming famine.
  6. Be Generous – Christians, above all people, should give to those in need. Yet you can’t give to family and friends in need during a CME unless you’re prepared.
  7. Water is life – the public works systems of delivering water depend entirely on electricity. Have you considered how to store water?
  8. Rejoice! – “In everything give thanks, for this is God’s will for you” (I Thess. 5:18). I am more excited to be alive during the 2020s than any time during the last 2000 years. God is at work.

The proud are about to be humbled.

Stay Humble. Trust God. And Rejoice!

“For the LORD God is our sun and our shield. He gives us grace and glory. The LORD will withhold no good thing from those who do what is right.” – Psalm 84:11