I said it again.
“I just don’t understand.”
I’ve said it a lot the past few months.
When situations arise that aren’t clear, our human brains want to find answers.
It’s uncomfortable to not know.
But here I am. You, too.
We may know some things—maybe even a lot of things—but there are far more things we don’t know than things we ever will know.
Even when we live in our light, we have many nights we walk in the dark.
How do we stay safe while walking in the dark?
1. KNOW YOUR SURROUNDINGS
It helps to already be familiar with the terrain. You know the potholes on your daily path. Skirt around them in the dark, too. Be aware of obstacles when possible. Avoid spots you know will cause you trouble.
2. CARRY LIGHT WITH YOU
Even the darkest dark can become illuminated with a little light. Turn on the light of presence in the form of hope. When the darkness threatens to overcome you, light up your hope from the inside.
3. STAY CALM
When the lights go out, you might be tempted to panic. But staying calm leads to wiser decisions. Solutions arise easier from a calm head than a flustered one.
4. REMEMBER IT WON’T ALWAYS BE DARK
Be patient. In confusing circumstances, remember a brighter light will eventually shine again. It won’t always be dark. The sun will rise again as you await another rotation of the earth.
5. DON’T WALK ALONE
It’s comforting to have a friend along when you’re walking in the dark. Stay with your people. Together is better than alone in dark seasons.
Yet even with the best precautions and preparations, bad things can and do happen in the dark (well, also in the light). There are no guarantees.
Perhaps we have to redefine what “safe” means.
Here’s what it does not mean.
- Safe doesn’t mean we’ll never have pain.
- It doesn’t mean we’re immune from danger.
- It doesn’t mean our bodies will never die.
So what does safe mean in the ultimate sense?
For me, safe means I’ll never walk totally alone. I’ll always be loved. I’ll always be guided. Whether it’s light or it’s dark.
I’m reminding myself of that, even as I say, “I just don’t understand.”
Keep moving forward, dark or not. Keep living, keep loving.
Seeing clearly in the dark isn’t an illusion worth chasing. Seeking clarity can become an idol.
Maybe one day I’ll understand; maybe I won’t.
In the meantime, I hold tightly to others, and to the Spirit inside me.
That’s where my true security rests, in the light and through the dark.
How do you make it through a dark night?
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