In need of a good cry last night I got away for some time of solitude and went to the beach to watch the sunset and let the tears flow.
As the night sky began to emerge with the setting sun I noticed a flashing red light directly in my line of vision that had not caught my attention until the darkness began to move in. And as the sky continued to blacken I noticed another flashing light, then a few moments later I spotted another light further in the distance, and then another. These lights grew brighter as the sky grew darker.
The lights were intended to guide ocean travelers to safety. In fact, in the darkness boaters would be absolutely dependent on these lights to protect them from danger.
I couldn’t help but make a connection to my own journey.
Before the darkness rolled into my life, though I may have given lip service to my dependence on God, I felt pretty comfortable functioning independently — not necessarily in sin, but rather living in faith without a deep abiding reliance on my Father. Though I may not have acknowledged it as such, I felt pretty competent and capable, able to accomplish much without a need for God.
However, as the darkness began to intensify in my life, my dependence on him intensified too. I became newly aware of how essential he is to my survival. It is the darkness that made me recognize my dependence. It is the darkness that made me more aware of my need for his light. And it is in the darkness that his light grew brighter.
I am convinced that God uses the dark seasons of our lives to alert us to our need for him. Western Christians are far too apt to live in self-reliance. Yet, isn’t it amazing and ironic that God is able to use the darkness of this broken world to illuminate our need for him?! Though I wish hardship was not central to this life, I welcome the dependence on my Father that occurs in the darkness.
Thank you God for your guiding light!