Friday, January 13, 2012
That's all been transformed in just a few short hours - every tree branch is outlined in pristine white, every bush supports clumps of snow at the junctures of their evergreen boughs. It's beautiful. It's also cold and treacherous, but the environment has changed, and surprisingly this was really apparent last night when I turned off the lights.
We love night lights here; a single light pushing back the deep darkness of winter nights- they're so comforting and hopeful! But last night when the lights went off the darkness wasn't so dark. A solitary beam of hope wasn't as necessary because the whole environment was now clothed in white and the darkness had been lightened.
Yes, it was still night. Still winter. Still cold but it wasn't so dark: it was no longer that deep palatable darkness it had been.
Darkness in our lives is inevitable. There will be some tragedy, or disease, or disappointment that will throw everything into deep night. Scripture says the rain falls on the just and unjust alike - it's the age old question of "why do bad things happen to good people?" They just do. Loving God does not make us exempt from suffering.
But, from last night's evidence, I've realized there is a difference. Our night, our hardship, might be as dark as another's but the love and grace that God spreads out in our hearts, lighten this darkness.
Just as the snow cover reflected light so does our awareness that we do not walk through the dark nights alone. He not only goes with us (Ps. 23) but covers us with His love. We have hope and light; no matter how intensely the darkness tries to push into our souls.
While we would wish for a lack of hardship; or for God to transform our circumstances so that all is well we have no guarantee that will be how He works but we can be confident that if we seek Him, we will find Him and he'll transform our hearts.
Sometimes He calms the storm but He will always calm his child.