Step Into The Light
I'm going to spend the next two devos talking about Darkness and Light. I have this notion that we need both in order to be whole... hope these speak to you.
I love living in a place where most of the days are sun-drenched. I'd have a hard time trying to make a go of it in a town where most days were cloudy and grey.
[Full disclosure, however... when the thermostat hit 101 degrees yesterday, here in Austin... I did feel a bit defeated.]
Don't get me wrong, I love me a good rainy day... or a crisp, foggy Fall morning... but if I go too long without seeing the sun, it messes me up.
When I lived in Chicago, I would see billboards pop up during the winter time advertising professional therapy and counseling for people suffering from something called Seasonal Affect Disorder, which is a depressive disorder brought on by the grey skies of winter... months of grey skies... months.
The fact that the acronym for this disorder is S.A.D. is not a coincidence, I'm thinking. Because when we are deprived of sunlight, we wither like plants in a dark room.
And we often do destructive things when we begin to wither. Like binge way too much on Netflix and eat more ice cream than we ought. Or we watch too many Scandinavian movies... set in winter... with subtitles... and terribly sad endings.
Interestingly, so many of us deprive ourselves of the lightness of life in much the same way. We have lived so long with sadness, grief, loss, bitterness or regret that they become like old friends we don't know how to live without.
The poet Mary Oliver speaks to this in beautifully crafted words that help us understand how the lightness of life can help us let go of those sad, grey old friends of ours that keep us from being authentically us:
But I also say this: that lightThis ultimately is what God wants for you and me. It's why God became one of us in Jesus--in order to rescue all of us from our false sense of self, and our destructive ways of living.
is an invitation
and that happiness,
when it's done right,
is a kind of holiness,
palpable and redemptive.
Embrace the lightness of life today and every day. Know that this lightness comes from God---it is God. God is our life's light and this light shines brightest when we seek to be more like Jesus, the Light of the World.
May the grace and peace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you now and always. Amen.