From the Evangelist desk (Dressing Table) September 2009 Edition.
When Darkness Falls.
Why are we so black and white, dark and light with a lot of the things we do within our daily lives.
Star Wars told of the ‘Dark Force’. Most baddies within the old films are shown wearing dark clothes. Darkness scares many people. But I ask you one thing, have you ever experienced total darkness? When I finished school many years ago, but not as long ago as some, I started a job within the ‘Pits’ of Kent.
During my second month ‘Down the Pit’, I was taken along with the others within my class down to the ‘Pit Face’. All lights were turned off and we were told to turn off our Pit helmet lights. This was the first time I had ever experienced total and absolute darkness. You could not even see your hand in front of your face. There was no sense of where anywhere or anything was, is or even could have been. Just a total darkness, oppressing and final, no light, just a total blackness.
Why do we nearly always associate darkness with evil and alike? Why does Darth Vader dress in black? Why did his leader dress in black? Why was Luke Skywalker dressed in an off white? Why did Gandalf the Grey become Gandalf the White? Why does our legions depict the Black Knight as a baddy?
Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. Genesis 1:2
The people remained at a distance, while Moses approached the thick darkness where God was. Exodus 20:21
Clouds and thick darkness surround him; righteousness and justice are the foundation of his throne. Psalm 97:2
Then they will look toward the earth and see only distress and darkness and fearful gloom, and they will be thrust into utter darkness. Isaiah 8:22
He has driven me away and made me walk in darkness rather than light; Lamentations 3:2
But if your eyes are bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness! Matthew 6:23
Above are a few Scripture readings mentioning darkness. There are many, many mentions of the term. Some I would interpret as being good, because the darkness comes from God. And another is bad, where God can plunge us into darkness because we will not listen and learn.
Now I as one find darkness peaceful and tranquil at times. I close my eyes in prayer to the Lord. What is this depicting? I think darkness so that I am able to concentrate on the Lord and the awe that I am resting with at the time of prayer.
I like walking at night, when the world is quiet and at peace, (well my little piece of it anyway).
I close my eyes and choose late evening to meditate on the Lord with my time of Guided Prayer and the start of St Ignatius? Spirit Journey. Why? Because there are less distractions taking me away from my time with the Lord.
Then at other times I suffer the darkness of my sometimes embittered past, where I have been deliberately nasty to someone just to get even, where I have suffered jealousy and envy to some small degree. Believe me I have definitely had my Darth Vader moments in the past. These have all been brought to light, (pardon the pun). During my times of meditation. Most of them I had forgotten about and found it un-nerving that they should surface again after so many years.
As I have said before I believe that there is light and darkness in each and everyone of us and as Christians we are hopefully spending most of our lives sharing the Light of Christ with all that we meet. But we have to face facts, we are just human and we do have our off days. So the next time someone winds you up, like your loved one taking the remote control for the T.V. to change channel when you had not finished looking at the program on the other side. Or when they leave the door ajar when you like them closed, or when they always take prime parking slot, even when they are the second person to arrive home because you of course always think of others before yourself. Just take some time out and close your eyes, (darkness to spend a brief moment with the Lord) and offer the moment to God and ask that He Bless you with the Light of Christ to overcome your current situation. Now open your eyes and imagine the Light of the Lord flooding the scene and smile and show your understanding.
Remember that the other person sees the speck in our eye just as you may see the speck in theirs and of course the Lord says that you may well both have a log to remove before you offer to take the speck from the others eye.
So let us all remember darkness can offer safety as well as being scary. It can be a place of peace as well as being a place of war. And lastly with Glory of the Lord rules over darkness and light.
Yours in Christ.
© Rick Hayes, September 2009