We are not meant to live in the dark. Hope comes as light to our shadows.
The people walking in darkness have seen a great light.
On those living in a pitch-dark land, light has dawned. (Isaiah 9:2 CEB)
When we live in the dark we lose hope. We lose our sense of a future.
When we look into our future and see nothing we fall into the trap of despair.
Despair looks into the future and sees that we are not a part of it, that we have no place in future events. So we either give in and simple exist, or we work hard to construct routines, ideas, and things that give us the safety and security we can’t see. Whether we give up or drive ourselves in desperation, our choices become fueled by emptiness and darkness.
We ask: Am I here? Am I real?
As we live in the shadows and darkness we become invisible and there is no light in our lives to show us the way or to show us that we are valued.
Many shadows come into our lives when we experience rejection. We risk failure whenever we try to do something in our world. When we get caught up in the darkness of rejection we try to find a way to prove ourselves. And we must succeed.
Maybe we try to care for others so that they will see how loving we are and put in a good word for us. Maybe we go out of our way to show the world how original and unique we are: “Don’t ignore me.” Or maybe we try to win no matter what it takes.
When we have no vision of hope we must not fail.
Failure means destruction. Rejection erases us from history. So we work hard to be validated. It is only as we make our names known that we think we have a future. It doesn’t even matter if we are famous or infamous, at least people will know that we existed. All because we aren’t doubt our own existence.
Despair says that if people don’t know our name we are invisible; we aren’t real.
Hope does not fear the darkness and tells us we are real.
In the light of hope every act of creation comes from our desire to express our worth. There is an important difference between expressing our worth and proving our value. When we act out of the shadows we seek to prove our worth often desperately so.
The hope-filled expression of our ideas and our vision of beauty springs from that place inside us that is already alight with the Essence of the Creator. We see something and we share it.
This doesn’t mean we don’t experience the shadows of rejection or failure. We do. But our response to the darkness comes from a position where we already know we are someone of worth. Our vision of the future believes that we are beloved by the Author of life itself.
On the surface, success looks like success.
Artistry is artistry, and caring seems the same whether it comes from hope or desperation. But the motivation reveals the story.
We are people who are always growing in our vision of the future. In doing so, we cultivate a receptivity to grace. The Love of the Beloved affirms our value and worth in light and darkness, in failure and success.
The amazing thing is that once we lose our fear of being destroyed by failure, and step into the freedom of hope we see myriad signs of life in what we already do, even when our circumstances are completely dark.
Know that no one’s motivation is pure one way or the other. We are always a mix of wills. Which is the greater motivator: the blindness of uncertainty and despair, or the light of hope and life?
What’s inside you that is waiting to be shared with the world? How can you nurture this beautiful part of you and express it today?