This last Sunday Denise brought us a message about darkness and light. How good it was to hear this message, as everyone of us experiences times of darkness in our lives even when we live with the God of Light.
I was reminded of many hikes up Spencer’s Butte in the winter or spring, when the city was socked in with a thick layer of dark cloud. It was as if an iron lid had been placed on top of Eugene and Springfield. For many of us it is tempting to fall prey to “the blues” on days that are so gray as those days were. But hiking up the butte, somewhere near the summit, I found myself coming out of the darkness a bit and then reaching the top, I realized I had transcended the clouds altogether and was standing above that blanket of clouds, looking at a crystal-clear blue sky with sun all around. The clouds actually looked like a floor that you could walk out on (I didn’t try that.) There was an exhilarating feeling that came with this awareness, a sense of how vast the universe is. And I was reminded that, just like in our spiritual and emotional lives, there is always sunlight somewhere behind those heavy clouds.
Our God is a God of light. Jesus is the light of the world. Even before the sun was made three days later, God had already created some kind of light on the first day. This was his first act of creation, separating the light from the darkness. But what was this light if not the sun? Ellicot’s Commentary describes it as the result of God gathering together the various primitive elements in the cosmos, causing friction and condensation, essentially creating electricity! Think of lightning here. A bolt of light, a flash of brightness in the dark. Possibly on that first day of creation one could have seen bolt after bolt of lightning illuminating the skies in a hugely dramatic fashion. Or perhaps there was a steady lower level of electricity, which lit up the whole earth kind of like sunlight. Whatever it actually looked like, we learn from this that God truly is light and doesn’t even need the sun. How great He is and how good are all His ways!
When you are next tempted to feel like God has left you and like life is only darkness, remember that, sun or no sun, God is greater than our thoughts, feelings and circumstances, with light that is too bright for us to comprehend.
The city does not need the sun or moon to shine on it, for the glory of the Lord gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp. The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their splendor into it. Rev 21:23-24
The Lord wraps himself in light as with a garment. Ps 104:2