by Emily Conrad

…as the light grew…

The phrase jumped out from the pages of Watership Down, the Richard Adams novel I’m reading.

There is something about light lately.

A few days ago, Christina Hubbard of Creative and Free forwarded a Tweetspeak Poetry prompt: write a thank you to a candle. She took the prompt to heart and penned the lovely poem Dear Soy Candle. Though I didn’t write a poem, at the prompt’s suggestion, I did some research about candles.

The word “candle” experienced a peak in usage around 1900 and fell on a low point in the 80’s. It’s making a slight comeback now.

The word “light” has also experienced a recent uptick in its usage in books.

So, the stats agree with my experience: there’s something about light lately.

Perhaps it’s that there’s also something about darkness lately. Physically, emotionally, spiritually.

I see it in the winter sky, which the sun vacates before five each afternoon. I feel it as fighting a cold leaves my emotions under a shroud. I hear it when the high schoolers in my Bible study describe the bomb threat at their high school and the bomb that was actually found in a middle school.

Peace, justice, salvation, truth, and kindness all fall far short of the place they once held in our literature. What do we write about but that which we know–or want to know? And if we’re no longer celebrating and seeking these, what is that but another sign of darkness?

Yet there’s something about light.

As we stand in the gloom, we are not without help or hope. Light pierces darkness with astounding effectiveness. The human eye can see the flame of a single candle from thirty miles away under the right circumstances.

If a single physical candle has such power to illuminate, how much more so does Jesus?

Now this is the gospel message we have heard from him and announce to you: God is light, and in him there is no darkness at all. 1 John 1:5, NET

He is true, unchanging, never-flickering light. He shines all around us.

All generous giving and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or the slightest hint of change. James 1:17, NET

There’s something about the light.

Our practice of our faith and our methods of applying it sometimes flicker. Our hope and our understanding of God’s love falter, soft and fragile like the flame of a little candle.

Still, don’t underestimate the power there. Jesus never leaves us to our own devices.

“And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Words of Jesus, Matthew 28:20b, NET

And of Him, the Bible says,

And the light shines on in the darkness, but the darkness has not mastered it. John 1:5, NET

The darkness has not and will not overcome Him.

There’s something about the light.

As we stand in the gloom, we are not without help or #hope. There’s something about the light of #Jesus-via @emilyrconrad