Sunrises are proof that beauty and inspiration can come from the dark. Even though there’s been good times too, I’ve been in a bit of a funk this fall. I’ve doubted my purpose and my place in my home, life and universe. Things that were recently bright and clear felt muted…or almost silent.
What did I do? I just “kept swimming” the best I could at a different speed. For the most part, I allowed my self to cut the extras and keep the essentials – religion, relationships, real food (as much as I felt I could) and rest.
And you know what? Between the frustration and emotional aching, eventually, I felt some warmth. Then enough warmth to feel a little joy. Then a little more motivation. And some determination which led to doing some adulting things, which I allowed myself to be proud of – yes, we can and should pat ourselves on the back!
Tough moments still came, but I was handling them without denial or despair.
Then this morning, the light rose. I mean that I got out of bed with a smile on my face and hope burning in my heart. And after happily and deliberately doing some of my kids’ chores (What?! 🙂 I know, right?!) I witnessed half of my house get flooded with this stunning, fiery lavender warmth of sunlight. And it felt like the universe was welcoming me back to life.
I keep feeling like the good vibes are here to stay and then shrinking and hiding from that thought because I know now they won’t always. They can’t always. Which makes me not want to enjoy them now either. In fact, in recent years, I’ve allowed myself to feel like a failure because I had encouraged healing that isn’t necessarily possible for everyone right now. My mental health was flourishing but I knew the case wasn’t true for many of my close friends and family, no matter how hard I tried to help them. So I didn’t want to allow myself to feel those joys either. How could I if I couldn’t share them with the people I loved?
Today what I understand (again – it’s something I must remind myself of often) is that focusing on what I can’t do brings discouragement and darkness, the opposite of God’s light. Doing what I can do brings His light into this world. It’s not my job to heal everyone or even make them happy or hopeful. My life’s mission is just to share hope. That’s it. I’ve accepted that sharing hope is accomplished whether or not people are in a place or season to receive it. Just as the sun shines whether or not people wake up to see it or are in the side of the world where they can, it shines anyway.
We are all on our own journeys with the Master. Isn’t that great? It means that if our hope or light isn’t for someone, it’s ok because HE still walks with them. And though we may love others so deeply it hurts, if we can’t reach them it will be ok in the end. For me, that thought makes things OK right now too. God’s life-giving light shines on all so, eventually, their sunrise will come too.
But I can’t stop shining because I’m waiting for that to happen. None of us can if we want to feel better and make this world brighter. Rise anyway. Shine whatever light you have anyway. If your heart feels dark, move at whatever speed you can until you can warm up that soul-light again. That’s faith! Just keep believing it will turn back on and doing the essentials (not the Pinterest projects or other pretend “needs,” ok?) because when it does return your joy WILL be so much greater.
Your spirit’s sunrise will be worth the past season of darkness because its colors will be all the richer for the challenges you faced. The complexity of trials, humility and obedience brings a unique beauty we could never have designed or anticipated, but eventually, with God’s vision and strength, we can see Him in us, glowing with a love and light that’s eternal. We will be found shining with the light of Christ’s hope.
Sunrises DO come after darkness. Believe you have a beautiful one just behind that mountain.
God loves you and I love you.