Maneuvering in the dark is very uncomfortable to me. Even with a flashlight, darkness feels unsettling because of that control thing, I cannot see what else is out there. One time I was on a ten day “outward bound” type hike, and one of our leaders made us turn off our flashlights and just wait a minute. He wanted us to see that our eyes would adjust and that there was enough light to be able to hike through the woods. It was amazing how much we actually could see, and how much light was actually available. When I was focused on the dark it was easy to miss the light.
Lately, there have been many life events around me that feel so dark and oppressive, but as I stop and look closer, my eyes and heart adjust and the light comes into focus. As much as I want to see better into the darkness to make sense of it, there is enough light for where I am. In ancient times if someone did have to venture out at night, they had a type of lamp that attached to their sandals. The lamp was small, but it allowed for the traveler to see where they were stepping. There was enough light for the step they were on.
I believe it was Jill Briscoe who used this word picture to explain Psalm 119:105, “Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path”. The Jewish mind would have visualized these sandal lamps. The Psalmist is comparing scripture to the lamp. God gives us enough light for this moment. Sometimes it is only a small amount of light, nothing more, but never anything less.
So I continue to look for light, and point out light in the darkness. I choose to not be overtaken by the darkness because I am always living Coram Deo, always in the presence of God. In Him there is no darkness, He is light. (1 John 1:15) So I am applying my hike leader’s advice, and stopping to wait and allow my eyes to adjust. As I do this, I am noticing there is light in many places that I did not notice earlier, and trusting that there is enough light for each step.