With a thick cloud cover blotting out the moon and the stars, we would say, "It's PITCH DARK out here, DARKER THAN DARKNESS. An almost undefinable level of darkness.
My room was PITCH DARK---I could see nothing but black darkness. How could I get rid of that unwanted darkness? The proper electrical wiring, the wall switch, and the overhead light bulb were in place. The 'potential' for LIGHT was present, waiting to burst forth with its brilliant rays. Yes, LIGHT was literally at my fingertips, so to speak. Wow, the flick of the switch and Mr. Pitch Darkness was vamooso---dispelled in an instant, in the twinkling of an eye. LIGHT now flooded my room.
LIGHT, LIGHT, LIGHT---not far away...
LIGHT, LIGHT, LIGHT---right at hand all the time.
Sometimes in life, circumstances and/or people trigger deep, emotional responses in our lives. Darkness has invaded our life. This is not the physical darkness of night. This is a deep, oppressive, gloomy darkness that operates in the daytime as well as the nighttime.
A darkness that we cannot speak away...
A darkness that we cannot push away from our lives...
A darkness that we cannot "think" or "will" away...
A darkness that we cannot "hide" from...
Oh, we know we are not supposed to drown in this "sea" of darkness. Certainly, we cannot let others sense it, share it with friends or relatives. It must be the ride of the Lone Ranger.
Maybe not even consciously, we find ourselves spiraling down into the depths of DARKNESS---cascading down into that place called, "DARKER THAN DARKNESS."
Job knew about it:
"Yet when I hoped for good, evil came;
when I looked for light, then came DARKNESS.
The churning inside me never stops;
days of suffering confront me.
I go about blackened, but not by the sun..."
"Are not my days almost over?
Turn away from me so I can have a moment's joy
before I go to the place of no return,
to the land of gloom and dark shadow,
to the land of deepest night,
of deep shadow and disorder,
where even the light is like DARKNESS."
DARKER THAN DARKNESS!
King David knew about it:
"Your wrath has swept over me;
your terrors have destroyed me.
All day long they surround me like a flood;
they have completely engulfed me.
You have taken away companions
and loved ones from me;
and DARKNESS is my closest friend."
DARKER THAN DARKNESS!
The MASTER of the wall switch---there is no other remedy for the DARKER THAN DARKNESS problem:
"I (Jesus) am the LIGHT of the (whole) world.
Whoever follows me will never walk in DARKNESS,
but will have the LIGHT of life." John 8:12b.
JUST THE BEGINNING!!!
"I (Jesus) have come into the (whole) world
as a LIGHT,
so that no one who believes in Me
should stay in DARKNESS." John 12:46.
Peter speaking in 1 Pet 2:9:
But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood,
a holy nation, a people belonging to God,
that you may declare the praises of Him
Who called you out of DARKNESS
into His wonderful LIGHT."
Paul, passing on what Jesus had revealed to him:
Jesus speaking: "I am sending you (Paul)
to them to OPEN their eyes and turn them
from DARKNESS to LIGHT, and
from the power of Satan to God, so that
they may receive FORGIVENESS OF SINS and
a place among those who are
sanctified by FAITH in Me." Acts 26:17b-18.
David later testified:
"If I say , 'Surely the DARKNESS will hide me,
and the LIGHT become night around me,'
even the DARKNESS will not be dark to You;
the night will shine like the day,
for DARKNESS is as LIGHT to You." Psalm 139:11,12.
"You, O Lord, keep my lamp burning;
my God turns my DARKNESS into LIGHT."
And let's not forget Mr. Job---did he arrive at a conclusion?
"You told me to listen while you spoke
and to try to answer your questions.
In the past I knew only what others had told me,
but now I have seen you with my own eyes.
So I am ashamed of all I have said
and repent in dust and ashes."
King Solomon, the man of great wisdom, gives a gentle reminder:
"However many years a man may live,
let him enjoy them all.
But let him remember the days of DARKNESS,
for they will be many..." Eccl 11:8.
An oft-overlooked, powerful prayer by John the Baptist's
father Zechariah should seal our discussion:
"Our God is merciful and tender.
He will cause the bright dawn of salvation
to rise on us and to shine from heaven
on all those who live in
the DARK shadow of death,
to guide our steps into the path of peace."