A Catholic Convert in Ottawa

A Light in the Darkness

Posted on: January 18, 2016

We all struggle at one time or another. Maybe it’s because of stress at work or the loss of our job, financial concerns, the illness or death of a loved one, worry about our aging parents or the choices our children make, or challenges in our relationship with our boyfriend or girlfriend or spouse.

Forty-Part Motet

Part of Janet Cardiff’s Forty-Part Motet exhibit at the National Gallery of Canada.

Whatever the cause, we all face moments when we’d welcome a light in the darkness–a light to shine the way forward, to give us the courage and strength to keep going, to show us that we aren’t alone.

Can we let God be that light?

Today I read these words of David in Psalm 18:28*:

Yes, you light my lamp;

the LORD my God lightens my darkness.

Similarly, in Psalm 119:105–a meditation on “The Glories of God’s Law,” as the psalm is titled in the Revised Standard Version–we read this about God’s word:

Your word is a lamp to my feet

and a light to my path.

In reading God’s word and spending time in his presence, we can find the light we seek: the comfort and strength we lack in difficult times:

I love you, O LORD, my strength.

The LORD is my rock, and my fortress and my deliverer,

my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge,

my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.

Yes, by you I can crush a troop;

and by my God I can leap over a wall.

This God–his way is perfect;

the promise of the LORD proves true;

he is a shield for all those who take refuge in him. (Psalm 18:1-2, 29-30)

If we call on God, we’ll find that he is the rock that can’t be moved; he is the safe place for us to unburden our hearts; he is the one whose strength we can draw on and who can heal us.

Jesus told the disciples of John, when they asked if he was the Messiah, that “the blind receive their sight and the lame walk, lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear, and the dead are raised up, and the poor have good news preached to them” (Matthew 11:5). If we turn toward God’s light, we can see more clearly the road before us, begin to take steps to move forward, be cleansed of our sins and made new, hear his voice guiding us, start to change our lives for the better, and feel his Spirit at work in our lives.

And maybe, one day, we’ll be able to share that light with someone else searching for a light in the darkness.

“Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.”

~ Matthew 5:16

(Scripture quotes taken from the Holy Bible, Revised Standard Version, 2nd Catholic Edition.)

 

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Food for Thought

(Y)ou do not know about tomorrow. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and we shall do this or that.” ~ James 4:14-15

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