Holy God: Creator of stars and seasons, sun and moon, of the high tides that sweep the shore, of the low tides that leave gaps and pools, rocks and sea glass, and all matter of empty spaces—to you I pray.
It’s another dark winter morning, and I confess that I find it hard to see beyond the brittle branches of the wintering trees and the inky dark of the half-frozen pond. Beyond the dark of my own half-frozen heart.
Forgive my eyes, so prone to see the void that I miss your Spirit hovering of the darkness—over the rippled ice of the pond, over my shadowed heart—creating something new.
I confess my tendency to flit drunken and panicked like a moth, hell-bent on flying into the fluorescent lamps that were never made to lead me home:
the blue light of my phone that lights up the night with a thousand disembodied voices and faces and emails and texts, making it so easy to ignore the Presence palpable even in the absence . . .
the beam of the television that pulses canned laughter into the living room, sitcoms punctuated with ads for moisturizer and TJ Maxx, selling some seductively counterfeit version happiness in thirty-second blasts of light . . .
that third drink that flips on a switch in my brain—and it’s a carnival ride all lit up in the night—a carousel, a tilt-a-whirl—until I wake up a dry mouth and a headache and a dizzying sense of failure . . .
the third church group this week, where we string clichés like Christmas lights across the darkness, as if we could really make things brighter just by saying the right things, believing the right things, accumulating enough knowledge . . .
You, Holy God, have invited me into this season of darkness, and I have so often chosen the bright lights over the inscrutable mystery before me.
Give me the courage to walk into the darkness, knowing that it’s only the shadow of your fingers hovering over me, knowing that I am standing in the palm of your hand.
Give me the courage to look up and see that the darkness was never all that dark to begin with . . . and that what feels like a void has always been, will always be, shot through with the true light of your love.
Addie’s new memoir, Night Driving: A Story of Faith in the Dark, is launching next week! Be sure to check out her first book, When We Were on Fire: A Memoir of Consuming Faith, too!