Hope for When You’re Afraid of the Dark

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Well hello there, sweet readers. It’s been a hot minute since I’ve brought you something new here. I’ll confess, this time of year tends to bowl my fragile self right over. I’m always amazed and in awe of you mamas out there coordinating amazing antics with your Elf on the Shelf or hosting lovely Christmas parties.

I got out of my yoga pants today and put on an actual pair of jeans, so I’m calling that a win.

Whatever your approach to this season, Christmas is nearly upon us! While I may not be the most crafty mom out there, I am very excited about celebrating this holiday with my family.

In years past, the chaos of all the “to do’s” seemed to overshadow the true reason for the season; so this year I’ve tried to be more intentional about marinating in God’s Word and the story of Jesus’ birth. One podcaster I love gave a challenge to read John 1:1-18 every morning of the month, letting the words settle and sink deep into the soul.

I love a challenge of any kind and eagerly jumped into reading these sacred and mysterious words … and just as God loves to do, this ancient text jumped and popped off the page with fresh wisdom and insight.

On day 1, I excitedly opened my Bible and began reading, only to be stopped in my tracks a few verses in:

“In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” John 1:4-5 (ESV)

Big tears, full of emotion and burden, came quickly to the surface as I read those words, for I realized: lately, the darkness feels far stronger than the light.

For us, life isn’t all roses and butterflies right now. Our family is walking through some big, serious hardships. Darkness feels like a palpable, close friend I can’t seem to unfriend.

And I look around and see even more darkness, too. Unexpected deaths. Unfathomable health battles. Unrelenting relational struggles. It seems darkness, big and small, threatens to swallow up what light there may be.

If you’re anything like me, most of that darkness is simply scooped up and carried with me as I shop for presents, prepare for school parties, and ready my house for celebrations.

But when my weary, battle-worn soul drank in the pure words of Truth, it was finally able to exhale. I’d been believing the lie that all this darkness is somehow destined to win. How thankful I am for the Word of God, to set my mind right.

Dear one, I don’t know what you’re walking through this season. I hope your heart is full of excitement and happiness this time of year … but if it’s not, if you too are carrying a heaviness, I want to whisper truth you can cling to and count on while you wait in the dark:

The darkness has not and cannot and will not ever win. No matter how big, bouldering, or blustering, the darkness is destined to lose in the shadow of the cross.

Our light may seem fragile—after all, Jesus came as a tiny, helpless infant—but in its fragility, it is immovable. It will never be snuffed out.

So this Christmas, as you think about the awe and wonder of the Word made flesh and dwelling among us, remember the truth of Jesus’ birth—He brought a light that, though carried in the helpless body of an infant, bears the strength of a king.

And that light shall not be overcome by whatever darkness you’re walking in right now. It is my prayer that you and I will have the courage and strength to carry His light into the season and year ahead, with gladness and joy.

With Grace,

 

 

“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6 (ESV)

Be Still

by Meredith H. Carr

Download my latest book, Be Still, about how to practice the art of stillness in the midst of turmoil.

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©2020 Meredith H Carr

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