Advent 2: Darkness
Everything I truly need is counter-intuitive in this world. I strive to live in the light, but what I yearn for can only be found in the dark.
Somewhere along the way, I learned to fear the darkness. I don’t remember where or when. I just know at some point I needed a night light as a child.
From then on, I spent my life protecting myself from what lives and thrives in the dark. Darkness became an enemy and felt heavy, and I certainly didn’t share this with anyone. Darkness must remain in the dark…
Darkness, weighted down by
helplessness, and despair.
All designed to drain the oxygen from my life breath by breath by breath.
Yet, after spending time in the dark, a period that was orchestrated by the mystery of God, I found what I once feared in the dark transformed into greater gifts – what I truly need.
A need to be heard softened into a sacred silence – words no longer needed to be spoken.
A need for others melted into an intangible presence – affirmation and belonging no longer held power over me.
A need to know relaxed and morphed into a mystifying peace.
A need to be busy and drown out my inner pain became rest for my whole self; body, mind, and soul.
A need to control let go of expectations and found trust to carry me through disappointments and loss.
A need for purpose, a reason to live, embraced the fractured parts of who I am and… I became whole.
Only a few verses are given to Jesus’ venture into the dark desert. But it is there – in the obscurity of darkness – that the lasting work of inner transformation takes place.
Darkness, where the weight of my humanity is lifted and joy of being human springs forth.
"Periods of seemingly fruitless darkness may in fact highlight all the ways we rob ourselves of wisdom by clinging to the light. Who grows by only looking on the bright side of things? It is only when we lose our certainties that we will be able to deconstruct our false images of God to discover the Absolute Reality beneath all our egoic fantasies and fears. " Richard Rohr