Monday, June 11, 2012

Trusting the dark

The Dark. It has been a dark season - a dark season of the soul that St John of the Cross has called "the dark night of the soul". It's Cold. It's Very Cold. It's Silent. It's Very Silent. And it's Dark. Oh, so Very Dark. I am alone in the darkness. While my head may say that God is present, there is no evidence of that presence. His apparent absence makes the darkness seem even darker. The cold seems even colder. And it is disturbingly silent.

This photo doesn't really do justice to the dark - because in it you still get a glimpse of light. There is none of that in this season that I am in. Oh, occasionally I will experience a little glimmer - for a very very brief moment. A shaft of light penetrates the darkness, but it's gone in a flash. For the very briefest of moments it's there, but then just as quickly it's gone again. The darkness returns and I am enveloped once again in the dark - the cold - the silence - the absence of Presence.

Some have told me, "If it's dark and you feel God isn't present, then you have been the one to walk away from God. He is still where He always was." Reminds me a little of Job and his friends.

I read something a while back, and while I can't remember exactly where or what I read, essentially it said that it is precisely because presence was once experienced that absence is felt so deeply.

Trust. Running in parallel mode, there continues to be this idea of trusting God.  How can God, who has always been the 'fixer', and now has become also the 'wrecker', be trusted? While I am learning that there is much much more to this God than 'fixer' or 'wrecker' it's a long process of reconciling it all. I have come to understand, however, that more than taking steps to trust God, it's maybe enough to stop actively 'not trusting' Him. That seems to be a good place to start.

This matter of trust will not ensure that the darkness lifts; it's just a next step of my journey. God does give. God does take away. Job was able to say, "blessed be the name of the Lord" in spite of prosperity or great loss (Job 1:21). Should the darkness lift, may God be praised. Should the darkness continue, may I also find it within me to praise God.

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