The words stuck to my tongue like peanut butter on dry bread. And I’m so thankful they did. Though the taste was familiar, they felt bitter and far from the sweet, savory truth.
But shouldn’t I help my son overcome the fear of darkness?
Shouldn’t I tell him his surroundings are the same in the dark as the light? Shouldn’t he feel safe regardless of the time of day, no matter what he can or cannot see?
Normally, I would have tried to convince him of this. But the idea of light has followed me around lately. Reaching me in the most obscure and obvious places. And a part of me wants to teach him what I’m learning in hopes his journey would be more illuminated as a result. Regardless of how the darkness feels. The other part of me doesn’t want him to know the truth yet…how the darkness is a foreign animal no human could ever tame…
Jesus spoke to the people once more and said,
“I am the light of the world.
If you follow Me, you won’t have to walk in darkness,
because you will have the light that leads to life.”
I’ve been thinking about how light cannot be preserved. It can only be spent in the present. And how bright it is depends on how much power you expel behind it.
Jesus offers us a solution to our fear of darkness: Himself. The light of the world. The only light leading to a life worth living.
And I’m beginning to realize our hearts were designed like a rechargeable flashlight. We need to let Him wind us up now and then. We also need to give Him the proper space, for the more room we provide Him within, the brighter we’ll shine. The greater we illuminate. The more darkness we can squelch.
Friends, all we need is Jesus.
I reach down and turn on the little round switch in the dark. Immediately, his five-year-old voice whispers “Thank you, Mom.”
While stroking his cheek, I ask him, “Why is that better, bud? What’s changed?”
“You gave me light, so now I can see and have no reason to be scared.”
My smile widens as I see the opportunity He has given me here. And I share with my firstborn the promises I have tucked in my heart for times such as these–when the dark overwhelms.
Jesus is the Light of the World. (John 8:12)
He can be our trusty night-light.
Because Jesus is always with us and can help us when the dark feels scary.
He will always love us.
And no matter how dark it seems, joy always comes in the morning. (Lamentations 3:22-24)
So if we stick with Him, He will help us through.
As I bend low to kiss his cheek, I ask him, “What do you think about that?”
He puts his palm on my cheek as he whispers “I know that, Mom, but Jesus says it’s okay if I need a night-light, too.”
A chuckle escapes as I whisper back “You bet He does, bud. You keep listening to Him, okay?” And I leave the room, leaning in a little closer. Seeing Him more clearly. Realizing the dark might not be a bad thing after all.