Winter in our area brings darkness sooner in the evenings. In winter I look forward to Dec. 21st after which the days start having more sunlight, at least until June.
What is there about darkness that many of us do not like? In the daylight there are many things to see or on which to focus. I seem to have more energy when I see daylight. I’m a visual person. I feel safer when I can my surroundings. In the darkness, I can easily stumble for I can’t see what’s around me.
Often in the Christmas season we talk about the light shining in darkness, implying that darkness is negative. Yet, if we didn’t have a sense of darkness, we wouldn’t appreciate the light. There are gifts in the darkness if we look for them. Unless it is dark outside we can’t see the twinkling stars.
How does this affect in my spiritual life?
When I’m feeling darkness in my inner center, I ask myself some questions. Is there something I feel led to do but am resisting? Have I forgotten to be aware that God is with me and will light my way if I take the first step? Am I so looking for sunlight that I can’t see the twinkling stars in what feels like total darkness?
We talk about Jesus being the great Light of the World. In the Gospel of John 1:5 the writer refers to Jesus, the Word as “The light that shines on in darkness, a darkness that did not overcome it.”
And Isaiah 9: `1-2a we read “the people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; Upon those who dwelt in the land of gloom a light has shone. You have brought them abundant joy and great rejoicing…”
I’m not always aware of light in the midst of whatever I’m experiencing as darkness. Sometimes when I’m feeling inner darkness I just need to take reflective time. Other times it seems I need to let go of remaining in the darkness and act on the direction I’m being led.
How do I know what to do?
Usually either my life situation or my dreams give me a clue. As I respond, I may still have a sense of darkness but know that by my staying with it, I can find the gift and/or light it brings.
May you find the gift of starlight in the midst of your darkness.