The Street Light

 "He has sent Me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners." Luke 4:18......"No, I will not abandon you as orphans - I will come for you." John 14:18..."Consider how an imprisoned Paul and Silas sang joyful hymns to God and how a dying Stephen saw heaven opened. None were bound by their surroundings. What binds you?" Chris Tiegreen

 

We have all been in places we didn't want to be. Life has a way of telling us, as did Gollum to Sam and Frodo as they journeyed through Mordor, "We aren't in decent places." Like Mordor, these places can be dark, threatening, and filled with the unknown. But unlike Sam and Frodo, we're not there by choice. Darkness, in whatever form, has come upon our lives. We don't know why or how, and we don't know when it will end. Questions scream from within; Why am I here? What did I do? When will it end? But all we usually get in response is silence. His silence. Yet, He really isn't silent at all. I know, because I remember my own time in "Mordor."

 

It was in the first 2 months after the collapse of my marriage. I had taken a job delivering for Coca-Cola in Charlottesville, Virginia. I had gone out with the driver while it was still totally dark outside. At our first stop, I remained in the truck, sitting in the dark. In my brokenness I remember crying out to Him, "Father, why I am here? Why have You allowed this? Where is the future and hope You have promised?" I was held in the grip of the darkness that surrounded me, and threatened to overwhelm me from within. He did not give me an answer, and my situation didn't miraculously change. But in that place, He did come to me, and in that place, He gave comfort, hope, and above all, He gave Himself. In a place where I had no strength, He gave me strength. He didn't remove the darkness, or any of the other circumstances I was in, but He showed me anew, that they need not hold and bind me. He was still God, and I was still His, and this chapter of my life story was not the final chapter. He had much more to write. He's still writing it even now.

 

It's been 28 years since that morning in Charlottesville, but there is something else I clearly remember. As I sat in that truck, in the darkness, there was also a street lamp right above me. The full extent of that didn't hit till much later, but I did notice that though all around was darkness, I could see because of that light. Someone said that darkness isn't darkness if His light is present. His Word says, "The people sitting in darkness will see a great light." I was one who was sitting in darkness, yet in it, I was seeing light. The pain was too great for it to register at the time, but I know now that in that place that I thought Him absent, He was there, and He was working. My life didn't end on that dark street, and though I have found myself on other dark streets, it didn't end on them either. Neither will yours so long as you know that no matter how deep the darkness you may be sitting in, His light is greater. And no matter how the devil seeks to bind you there, His light and life will seek you out, guide you out, and make you free. There's a street light there, and you may not realize its import now, but it's Him, present and at work for you. Darkness is not darkness when He is there.

Blessings,
Pastor O

 

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