we sent this out a few weeks ago. Updated our posts a bit late.
WHEN DARKNESS ABOUNDS
Sometimes in life it seems like there is more darkness than light, when the sun seems hidden. Like when you are driving at night on a rainy foggy night and it’s hard to see much of anything. Life, at times is like that. Things don’t always work out as planned. The past goodness of God is forgotten, His kindnesses seem distant. More things that bring sadness have entered in and few of the blessings of God seem as tangible.
We have experienced some recent sadnesses and disappointments in our life. These are not like the disappointments some of my friends have experienced or are experiencing. I have a friend right now that is in a Turkish Jail because of his faith. We have seen other friends lose children. No, I am not talking about those severe disappointments that put life on hold. Instead I speak of those disappointments that we all experience, and at times come into our life like a weather front in central Europe where the clouds just remain and you count the the days that you have not seen the sun. You long to see the sun but it hides its face behind the clouds. Have you ever been in that place? If you know the story of Marah and Elim from Exodus 15 it’s like you are in the place called Marah, the place where the water of life is bitter, for too long. You desire to leave and travel to Elim, the place where the waters of life are sweet. I heard a great African American preacher give a simple yet powerful sermon on Marah and Elim and how life at times seems to be going back and forth between Marah (bitter) and Elim (sweet) and how to find God in both places.
If you are surprised a pastor or a missionary writes this then you really do not know pastors or missionaries well. But then very few people who go to church understand pastors, and fewer understand missionaries.
When I feel this way I have two rocks that help. The first is the Lord who is ever good, ever kind and always drawing us to Himself. It has been at those times of disappointment and sadness when I am closest to the Lord. In the darkness, His Spirit and His word seem to speak louder and clearer. One of my favorite verses is John 1:5 – “The light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it”. I have discovered that the darkness does not hide Him from me, but instead it is in the darkness that I see Him clearer.
My other Rock in my wife. We seem to balance each other as a pair. I get melancholy, she does not allow the sadness to affect her. I question, she believes. I need all the numbers, she doesn’t need to take a census before making a decision. When it’s cloudy outside for 23 hours of the day and I feel blue, she sees the sun come out for the one hour and is full of joy. She is willing to live in a tiny basement apartment, loving 24 other girls and young women with very little thought to her own possessions or comforts. She is a rock full of faith and trust in the Lord.
I no longer despise the disappointments, sadness and darkness of life. For I have learned my Lord uses it in my life that I may refocus and see Him clearer. The darkness is not my enemy for the light always seems greater in the darkness. Oh, that His light would be as bright in the day as it is in the night so I would learn to keep Him as close in the times of plenty as in the times of want.
When darkness veils His lovely face, I rest on His unchanging grace; In every high and stormy gale, My anchor holds within the veil.
We thank you for your support and prayers. They are most wonderful.
Bryan and Jennifer Jurkowski