As a child, I was afraid of the dark. Leaving a nightlight or the hall light on was how I preferred to sleep. Perhaps you have felt the same way at some point in your own life.
Since growing up, though, the dark doesn’t bother me as much. I can now sleep without a light on in the room or even in the hallway. In fact, I actually sleep better without the glare of light hitting me or reflecting around the room at all. Then why do I still face restless, sleepless nights at times? Why am I bothered and find myself so resistant to sleep when I feel “darkness” in my journey?
This kind of “darkness” is different from just the absence of light. It is experiencing the absence of someone; feeling alone and abandoned. Isolation is such a difficult part of this grief journey. Even when we are in a room full of people, we can feel lonely. To the average person who has not experienced the loss of a close loved one, that type of loneliness may seem foreign. But to those of us who are navigating the road of loss, it is all too real and occurs way too often.
Tonight though, God revealed a new perspective on darkness through my reading and hearing Beth Moore suggest a new point in her A Woman’s Heart study, Session 3 DVD. In this section of the study we find that Moses had requested to see God’s glory; the very goodness of God that sets Him apart from His creation and everything known to man.
God grants Moses his request explaining what He would do to fulfill it. “There is a place near me where you may stand on a rock. When my glory passes by, I will put you in a cleft in the rock and cover you with my hand until I have passed by. Then I will remove my hand and you will see my back; but my face must not be seen.” (Exodus 33:22, 23 NIV)
It was then suggested that perhaps the “darkness” we experience around us is not the absence of God’s presence in our lives. Perhaps it is merely a season where God has placed us in a cleft in the rock and has covered us for a while with His hand. It is dark there. We cannot see what lies ahead. We only know the past. Reliving that past can be difficult, long and frightening.
But, this season of darkness will not last forever, even though right now we fear it will. No, God has plans for us. And those plans include light, knowledge, and freedom from pain. We just need to have the faith and fortitude to wait on Him. Not an easy task, but one that is attainable because we do not have to do it alone. So as we sit in that cleft and see darkness, instead of feeling isolated and alone, let us imagine being sheltered, protected, and cared for. God realizes we can only handle so much pain along the journey of loss and grief. Allow His strong, good hand to relieve some of that hurt and let us strive to rest and find safety in the darkness He provides. He truly is the “light” in our darkness.
Until next time –