In frustration, I finally gave up the tossing and turning and reached for the light on the nightstand. Sleep wasn’t coming easy this night. Even though both my mind and body were extremely tired, I couldn’t blissfully float off to sleep. But at least I understood why. A sadness was squeezing me; jangling my bones so profoundly I couldn’t relax.
I’d always struggled with my identity in Christ, so the words from a recent sermon were rattling me. That God sees us as completely accepted, extremely valuable, eternally loved, totally forgiven and fully capable. All I kept seeing were the mistakes, the failures, the times when people said, “You blew it. You’ll never measure up.” The last way God sees us, fully capable, caught in my throat. What about all I’d failed to do? Those times when I couldn’t even keep the promises I made to myself, much less to others. They mocked and wrecked me so much, I quickly turned off the light relieved that darkness once again covered me and my room.
The shadows of the night momentarily grabbed a hold of me until a car rumbled down the street outside my bedroom. The lights from its headlamps pierced through the darkness of my room. Even with my shutters drawn, light invaded both the night’s inky blackness and the gloom around my soul. And then it hit me – the promise of God: “The Lord will be your everlasting light.”
I love these words from Isaiah because they reminded me no matter how late I was up that night, the light of day was coming. They promised action on the part of our loving God. God is near. He is not absent from this earth. He is working – illuminating our world. God is working life out on our behalf, even when all we see is darkness.
My gloom started to lighten as another thought stuck me. How far I’ve come…how my story includes, yes, many a misstep, but also times when I tasted the sweet thrill of victory. I reflected about how my story changed once I embraced Him. And He is still writing my story. My life in small ways was reflecting back His glory. Yours is also.
In that momentary flash of headlights, God reminded me he is right beside me. The sky will lighten. The sun will warm the earth again. He has the power to overcome darkness when I don’t feel okay. None of us need to stay ensconced in darkness, when God will light our path. He is impacting our lives every day moving us towards a magnificent finale when there will be no darkness, no doubts, no tears.