One thousand people were surveyed and 86% of them said that in one aspect or another we live in dark times. I admit, I made that sentence up, but I bet you didn’t find it hard to believe. I drew it from my observations in social media. I admit that I am one of the 86% much of the time. But not all the time.
As the sun sets earlier in the day and winter approaches, we’re all going to have to be extra self-aware. You’ve no doubt seen the dozens of memes about 2020. This is a year of infamy for sure.
Humor helps, for sure. But it’s not always easy to laugh when the troubles keep piling on. Pandemic, Hurricanes, Earthquakes, Isolation, Politics … the list is pretty extensive. Then throw in the other pressures and struggles on top of that and it can seem really dark. I do want to contend, though, that it’s never completely dark.
The night sky reminds us that in the vast darkness of the universe, there are luminaries whose light stretches across miles and miles until detected by the human eye. There are also lighthouses that guide the way. There is hope when all hope seems to have vanished. Look for the light when times seem very dark.
Look for people who bring light and hope with them. They help guide us just a little farther along the paths of life. Who among your friends can carry your spirit for a little while?
Look for words that bring courage and strength when we feel we may not be able to go on. First I would suggest the Psalms or maybe John’s Gospel. But there are many writers who continually resource our deepest hopes.
Look for art that inspires your vision for beauty and expression. There is a reason that some of the works of the masters has remained popular for a long time after they have passed from this life.
Listen for a song that reaches your heart. It could be a Christian song or a secular song. What is important is that it expresses hope for a brighter day to come.
Look for Jesus. I don’t mean to list Him last as if he is of least importance. But I hope you will look for Jesus in all of these areas and more. Read about Jesus and see how He loves. He loves you in the same way friend. Try to understand that Jesus does not love us because we are moral or smart or good looking … He loves us because we are humans – Creations of the Creator. He demonstrated the greatest of all loves when he died on the cross in our place. In the words of Steffany Gretzinger’s familiar hymn…
No one ever cared for me like Jesus. His faithful hand has held me all this way.
I think it’s really important in a dark time that you do not turn inward or just allow the dark thoughts to begin to direct your thoughts. Our Enemy is an accuser and a liar. He will plant the seed if you will allow it to grow. It’s never wrong to seek out professional help when you need it.
No matter how dark it seems, it isn’t completely dark, friend.