The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who dwelt in a land of deep darkness, on them has light shone.
Isaiah 9:2 (ESV)
A friend of ours wrote a reflection on suffering during the Christmas season. He talks about the darkness and the painful experience of being alone, pains that are accentuated by the festiveness of the season.
Many of the people that we minister to experience this pain and live in this darkness. For some, it is the first Christmas after their loss that leaves them to wrestle with their anguish in the midst of the festivities of the season. They are searching and hoping for the light to relieve their personal darkness. We see this in our ministry up north.
Isaiah, in his prophecy, talks about the people walking in darkness who have seen a great light (Isaiah 9:2). It is a great light that has come in the person of Jesus, who offers hope and comfort to the suffering. This hope and comfort are extended to all of us, whether we are in emotional or spiritual darkness. Jesus said, “Blessed are those who mourn for they will be comforted” (Matthew 5:4).
In this season be encouraged that you are not alone. There is someone who knows the depth of your pain as you hold out empty hands. There is someone who hears as you groan and weep in your grief! Jesus has promised that He will not leave you nor forsake you. Our friend ends his reflection by saying, “I hope all of us, in spite of our particular pain, find some unexpected merriment and love this Christmas season.” This is also my wish for you this season of Advent.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for life, and for letting us live in this earthly world. I pray for all the people who are suffering from all ailments. I ask that You would bless them just as Jesus said, Amen.