Scripture – 2 Peter 1:16-21
Even Darkness is Not Dark to God
By Shannon Endicott
“And you will do well to pay attention to it, as to a light shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts.” -2 Peter 1:19
Whether you decide to trust the witness of those who have gone before you, or you decide to do whatever it takes to become a witness yourself, here is the testimony of faith: darkness is not dark to God; the night is as bright as the day. – Barbara Brown Taylor
Almost 8 years ago I was about to enter one of the darkest points in my life. My 9-year marriage was rapidly deteriorating in front of me. I was struggling with post-partum depression. I had spent too much time tearing apart my relationship. And I had completely lost touch with God. Darkness was truly surrounding me.
They say that when you go through something terrible, people tend to do one of two things…you move away from God or you move toward God. While I wouldn’t wish my journey on anyone, for me it was a time of drawing closer to God and relying on God more than I ever had.
This period of darkness was something I would have never chosen and yet there I was…face to face with some of my greatest fears and surrounded by what felt like spiritual, emotional and relational darkness.
In her book Learning to Walk in the Dark, Barbara Brown Taylor (one of my favorite authors) shares…
“I have learned things in the dark that I could never have learned in the light, things that have saved my life over and over again, so that there is really only one logical conclusion. I need darkness as much as I need light.”
I would never go so far as to say God caused my divorce, but I would say the circumstances of my divorce were used to draw me into a closer relationship with God. I am not the same person I was before. I found God through the darkness.
Barbara Brown Taylor also says,
“If we turn away from darkness on principle, doing everything we can to avoid it because there is simply no telling what it contains, isn’t there a chance that what we are running from is God?”
The darkness that I feared and was forced to walk through is something that I now cherish, but please don’t think these are easy words to write. As Nadia Bolz-Weber says, “If you’re going to share widely – make sure you’re sharing from your scars and not your open wounds.” It took years of time and lots of counseling to get to this place, but I am so thankful for the darkness of my divorce as much as the light of my current life.
As it says in our reading, “We do not follow cleverly invented stories when we told you about the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty” (vs16). Through times of darkness, I have been an eyewitness to the power of Christ in my life. A majesty I never would have had eyes to see had it not been for the darkest of nights.
My prayer for you is that even in your darkness you would grow and learn and wait “until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts.”
- Have there been times of darkness in your life? Looking back, in what ways do you now feel God was with you in those times?
- Have the dark times helped you to appreciate the “lighter” times of life?
- How is Christ’s “majesty” working in your life?
- In what ways can you be a “a light shining in a dark place for others?”
Wesley’s Challenge Questions for the Week:
- Did the Bible live in me today?
- Do I give it time to speak to me everyday?