5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not over come it.


When we are able to connect to that deep inner place that is variously referred to as “heart”, “spirit”, or “soul”, we come into contact with that part of ourselves that experiences the truth of John 1:5.

There is darkness. Sometimes it seems that there is so much darkness. The world around us feels like such a broken place; everywhere we look there is pain, suffering, injustice and turmoil. Life is desperately unfair. At times it feels hard to put one foot in front of the other.

It is tempting to want to run from the darkness, to hide from the pain or deny the suffering. The world provides so many temptations for us to escape from the awareness of the difficult realities that are everywhere evident. There is a compelling energy to seek distraction so that we will not have to face the devastation we do not want to see.

But, if Christian faith is primarily about “energy”, “spirit”, “lifeforce” and “love”, it is also fundamentally about perception. Faith is a particular way of looking at the world and life. It is a lens through which to view life. It is a way of seeing beneath the surface, of penetrating the darkness.

When, instead of seeking to flee the darkness, or rush to make sense of the chaos, or fix the brokenness, I am able to simply sit with the discomfort and pain, something begins to shift within me. I begin to see in the midst of the darkness shards of light. They break through everywhere, not in spite of the darkness, but in the midst of the darkness.

Darkness is not my enemy. It is the environment within which my ability to see light begins to grow. Without the darkness I would never perceive the light. Pain is the place where perception is honed, where I begin to be able to see more clearly the reality that there is always light. And, the more deeply I perceive the light, the more fully I am able to transmit that light. The more I see the light of Jesus, the more I become like that which I see and the more that light shines through me into the world.

Jesus said,

I am the light of the world. (John 8:12).

Jesus also said,

You are the light of the world (Matthew 5:14).

Trust the light that Jesus was and that you are.