The Epic Battle of Monster Darkness vs. the Prince of Light

In your darkest of moments, what do you do?

Do you yell up at the sky? Do you run from the problem? Do you suppress, repress, deny? Do you curl up in a ball on the floor and cry your eyes out?

I usually resort to the latter, but I’m a tear kind of girl. I need to cry everything out. It’s very liberating. Some people grow angry, some bitter, some become resentful of others, themselves, or God when their world turns absolutely bleak.

Heartaches, letdowns, and pitfalls occur every single day in every single person’s life. Rarely and I mean extremely rarely does a day go by with absolutely no hitches. It could be something trivial like forgetting to charge your phone and it dying halfway through the day. It could be something a little more traumatic like losing your puppy. Or it could be a major heartache like a breakup, a job loss, or a terminal illness. No matter what, something is going on in everyone’s life that he or she is not too happy about. Right now, for instance, I could probably count 5 things that are bothering me. Five things that if I had my druthers, I could snap my fingers, and the problem would go away. But sadly, magic snaps, clicking red shoes, or magic wands do not exist in our world.

There have been times in my life when I have been so down, so stressed, so hurt, so broken, that all I felt was absolute darkness. My inner being felt numb and my entire world felt bleak. In my mind, I could come up with no possible solution to solve what was going on around me. In my mind, my life was over. In my mind, there was no light at the end of the tunnel. Instead, my life felt like a never-ending tunnel that was heading into a deeper and deeper hole toward the middle of the earth. As far as I was concerned, I was a skewered duck ready for the roasting. I might be wrong about this, but I highly, highly doubt it (or perhaps I am just a bit more dramatic with my feelings of doom and gloom than others), but I guarantee that 99% of you who are reading this have felt something similar at one point in your life. I don’t know what caused your darkest moment, but unless you have lived in wonderland, candyland, or never never land, you have experienced a bleak moment where you thought your world was over. If you haven’t yet, I hate to break your heart, but it’s coming. Guaranteed. These are the moments that God uses to shape you. Some of you have experienced these moments in different degrees, some of you have experienced them multiple times, some of you are going through them at this exact moment. Every human has experienced the gnawing bleakness of this world.

Now, let me ask you this. When you are in those moments, what do you do for comfort? Do you go and curl up in your loved one’s arms and bawl until your eyes are puffy? Do you binge on ice cream, doughnuts, and godiva chocolates? Do you book yourself a vacation on a faraway island where your problems don’t exist? Do you avoid the person that you feel is causing your heartache? Do you yell, scream, and throw things? ( Yes, oddly some people find this comforting…I do not recommend it as therapy just for the record). Or do you perhaps drink until your entire body is numb?

The problem with all of these things is that yes, they are all comforting in some way, but none of them actually solve the problem. None of them actually take the problem away. After the numbness of the alcohol wears off, after the 5lbs of ice cream is sitting on your hips, and after the tear ducts literally dry out because you’ve cried for so long, the problem is still waiting on you. The darkness, the bleakness creeps back over you.

How do you get rid of darkness?

You turn on the light.

When I was a younger, I was convinced that a monster lived under my bed, and every single night after I turned off my light and crawled under my covers, I would lay there with my eyes wide open and with my ears perked up waiting, waiting for Boogeylips to crawl out from under my bed and eat me. Yes, I had a vivid imagination even as a child. If I heard a creak, I would immediately reach for my lightswitch above my bed and flood the room with light. For some reason when the light was on Boogeylips didn’t exist. I would catch my breath, wait until my racing heart would slow down, and finally from sheer exhaustion fall asleep. (Occasionally, I would wake up the next morning with the light still on from the night before.) As long as the light was on, I knew I was ok.

As adults, we don’t have Boogeylips. We have broken hearts, broken bank accounts, broken families, broken relationships, broken dreams. This world is littered with broken things. As adults, we cannot flip a switch and make all of our problems go away. As adults, we have to look toward the greatest light of all.

All throughout scripture, Christ refers to Himself as the light. He is the ultimate light. He is the giver of all light. He is the answer to all of our darkness.

Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” – John 8:12

As Christians, we have to daily choose to walk in this light.

This is the message we have heard from Him and proclaim to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all. If we say we have fellowship with Him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. – 1 John 1:57

Often when I am down or feeling some sort of anguish in my heart, I remember an old hymn I used to sing in church when I was a little girl. Now when I was nine, singing this in church was torture, but now that I’m older and the words are embedded in my head, it is such a comfort to me to be able to sing, “Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus.”

O soul, are you weary and troubled?

No light in the darkness you see?

There’s a light for a look at the Savior,

And life more abundant and free!

Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
Look full in His wonderful face,
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim,
In the light of His glory and grace.

Through death into life everlasting
He passed, and we follow Him there;
Over us sin no more hath dominion—
For more than conquerors we are!

Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
Look full in His wonderful face,
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim,
In the light of His glory and grace.

His Word shall not fail you—He promised;
Believe Him, and all will be well:
Then go to a world that is dying,
His perfect salvation to tell!

Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
Look full in His wonderful face,
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim,
In the light of His glory and grace.

When you are in your darkest moment, Jesus is that light. He is the power source.

I have always known that Jesus is the light of the world, but only recently did it literally jump to my attention. My good friends, Circleslide, just released an album called “Echoes of the Light.” Gabe told me the concept behind it awhile back, but it didn’t exactly register. Yes, the concept registered – Gabe explained it excellently, and I fully comprehended it, but spiritually it didn’t stick at that moment. It didn’t stick until I actually sat and listened to the entire album about 5 times in a row on a road trip to California. Woven through every song in the album is the message that God is the light in every dark situation. In your deepest despair, God is there. His love is amazing, He is with us even in the eye of a hurricane, in the midst of every storm of life, we can look up at the light of God. The overall message had such a profound impact on me, that suddenly I started seeing problems differently. Yes, there were dark moments, but the light of Jesus was there, I had simply been ignoring it. I hadn’t been looking up. I had been looking at the problem and not at Jesus shining through the fog, rain, and clouds. The album is actually a  challenge. As believers we are meant to echo the light of Christ.

Gabe said it best, “If God is the sun, we (as believers) are the moon.” We are supposed to reflect the light of Christ not drown in the darkness.  However, there are many times that we don’t feel like echoing Christ because we like to sit in our own little dark pity parties. We turn our story into “woe is me.”  Now if you knew only half of the stuff that the members of the band have gone through in just the past year, you would be in awe that they could get up on a stage and praise God and sing about being an echo of His light.  But their songs are a testament that even in your bleakest of moments God is there. They are walking echoes of Christ’s light. They challenged me to be a better echo. They challenged me to focus more on the Light of Christ than the actual problem at hand.

We have to hold on to His promises in the midst of our bleakest moments because He is forever faithful. He promises to be there for us every step of the way, and He promises to be the light in our darkness. He never promised that we would be without trials and tribulation, but He does promise to be that shining, comforting light.

“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart, I have overcome the world.” – John 16:33

God has already overcome the world. Jesus has already declared himself as the light. As believers, we have to hold on to that promise of light. In our bleakest of moments, we have to turn our teary eyes toward His light. We have to look away from the darkness and we have to walk toward His marvelous light.

But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for His own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who called you out of the darkness into His marvelous light.” – 1 Peter 2:9

Run toward His light…

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