As winter approaches, darkness also begins to set in. Heavy clouds fill the sky and the evening darkness encroaches onto the precious light hours. But at times over the last 6 months there has been many periods of darkness, where light has struggled to cast it out. The constant battle. The battle that no one denies exists. Autumn is upon us. As the ground begs for more light the trees give up their leaves in the hope to provide it and that is what it has felt like at times for me; giving up pieces of myself to experience more light in my life.
As I enter the final stages of pregnancy I begin to reflect on the journey so far. A journey of light and darkness. A magical interplay between the blackest of blacks and the swirling sparks of colourful, bright lights. As the butterfly touches fight against the fear of loss. The magic of life, a Child of God.
6 months ago words flowed on to the screen naturally. Blog after blog was produced, mainly for myself; for my own journey and yet shared with an infinite set of people. Then the words dried up, a darkness seeped in. For as the the little light grew within me, a darkness has been fighting hard to take back control. Words stopped flowing. Now words flow, but the darkness prevents them being released.
Until today. “The time came for the baby to be born” (Luke 2:6). This line obviously is not referring to the birth of my own child but to the birth of Jesus. Whether it is right or wrong for many the countdown to Christmas has begun. For some this is a celebration of family; to others a commercial event; others see it as a time of despair, of loneliness and darkness; and there are those that see it as a beacon of hope and light.
As my role in society begins to change and shift, with it comes a new set of labels that I worry I will not be able to fulfill or live up to. Mother, pharmacist, spouse, soon-to-be vicars wife. I have been letting these labels define me. Not allowing myself the chance to grow and develop as I need. Paralysed by fear. My demon, my darkness.
With this I forgot something so fundamental, so basic and my most important label; Child of God. For in the moments of paralysis, where my brain and body have been unable to pray God has read my heart. In the times of doubt and loneliness, God was there to support. In the season of anger and misunderstanding, God has forgiven.
“I am the light of the world” (John 8:12). Soon the twinkling Christmas lights, the roaring fires and little candles will battle the darkness of winter, as we begin to celebrate the birth of light. The battle of light and dark continues throughout the world. Yet even our own battles with darkness can be an inspiring light to others. So I write this not as a beacon of light (although for someone it may be) but as someone who was inspired by another’s light and hope this very day.