Can I shoot straight with you? I’m scared of the dark. Not when I’m sleeping comfortably in my house but please don’t ask me to go outside in the dark without a good light!
It was a cold, damp, February night with no moonlight out. My horse was saddled in the barn waiting for my shift to check heavy cows at the midnight shift. I had my trusty spotlight with me as I quietly slipped into the barn. Blaze quietly nickered at me excited to have company again.
As I leaned into him and soaked up some of his warmth for a second I lingered over the familiar horse smell that always brought such comfort.
He blew out a little as I adjusted my saddle and tightened his cinch again. No need to put a bridle on as he was my old faithful. I could ride in a halter and it was just out to the calving lot anyway.
Blaze was a sorrel horse, with a narrow white blaze and tall and lanky. Part thoroughbred and the rest good, old ranch horse he was always challenging to climb on with so many clothes on. But his patience always impressed me.
There was a jig in his step as we trotted down the lane towards the lot. He loved to work and was always game for whatever might come. I can’t say I felt the same at midnight but was grateful to have my trusty steed riding out into the moonless night.
We slipped through the heavy cows as calmly and quietly as possible. I shined my spotlight out into the herd looking for any that might be calving in this brutal cold. It was highly likely they’d need to go into the barn if that was the case. I said a prayer under my breath, “please Lord let them wait until daylight!”
My spotlight was strong and could reach quite a ways. But…it was limited to the direction it was pointing.
So, as I turned it to the right and stared up the hill to see if anything was happening, I felt a thud as pain shot up my left leg and Blaze and I were going down.
A cow I hadn’t seen or even heard coming hit us hard just above my stirrup and Blaze’s ribs. She knocked his legs right out from under him and down we went on the icy, frozen ground.
Of course my spotlight came out of my hand and landed a distance from me and not pointing in the direction I desperately needed.
Blaze and I scrambled to our feet trying to get our bearings in the darkness. Thankfully he stayed right with me and the cow didn’t come back for round two!
I’d never felt more desperate to find that little bit of light my spotlight could offer. I had to fight the heavy, dark, panic as I held onto Blaze for moral support.
Of course hitting the ground that hard, my spotlight broke and there was no light to be found. So I shimmied up onto Blaze and headed back towards the house. I’d have to find another flashlight or something to finish this check. Not to mention a huge helping of courage to face the darkness again.
Have you ever felt that desperate panic over lack of light in your life?
I think most of us have at some point or another. Either in the natural, spiritual or both.
We’re created to crave light. To move towards it. Our Heavenly Father is light and without Him we have a big, black hole void in our lives. Our very being hungers for His light to fill us up and bring light to the dark, shadowy parts of our lives.
Just as Blaze and I were knocked off course by things that go bump in the dark, we too can have that happen in our spiritual lives. If we don’t keep our spiritual flashlights on we can be blindsided by the enemy working in the darkness. Satan and his demons love to work in the darkness. So we must be on guard and bring things into the light asap!
How do we do that?
Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” John 8:12 ESV
Well, we ask God to come in and shine a light into areas we need it. Expose the lies the enemy is throwing at us.
What is kept in the dark grows and festers. What is brought into the light is exposed and heals.
I don’t know about you but things that aren’t even that big seem so much more threatening in the dark. Hard to figure out and often multiplied out of proportion. But when the light hits them we often think, “really, that’s what was bothering me?”
Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. Psalm 119:105 ESV
God gives us clear instruction on how we keep the light in our life. It’s His word! It’s a lamp for our feet and lights our path.
But it doesn’t do it by osmosis. Dusty Bibles often lead to dusty spiritual lives. We’ve gotta crack the Good Book open and let it illuminate our lives.
I’m challenging you (and me) to dig into our Bible’s this week. Let it light up places that have grown cold from the darkness. Will you join me?