Wednesday, February 24, 2016

In the darkness....


My daddy loved road trips and impromptu adventures.  I remember day trips to the beach or to go tobogganing on Mt. Hood's snow covered slopes. Camping and fishing trips were frequent, too, as were drives to visit this or that cousin or shirttail relative.  One of my fondest memories of these outings was driving back home in the dark.  This was before seat belt laws or carseats, so I remember lying down in the back of the station wagon and drowsily watching the moon and stars in the black velvet sky as we drove down some winding back road toward home.  

Daddy had mentioned on several occasions that he'd never been in a car accident, and at that time in my life I'd never been in one either.  I felt perfectly safe and impervious to such dangers.  My daddy was in control.   I was blissfully ignorant of the turn of events to come, of the day when daddy would sit us down and tell us he was leaving mama.  All that I knew in those moments was the warmth of the car, the feeling of contentment and safety, the brilliance of the stars and the moon shining down on me, and the feeling that I was protected from the darkness that was out there beyond the cocoon of our old station wagon.

Before too many years had passed, Daddy moved out, and I never again trusted in him like I did back when I believed he would always be there to protect me from anything bad.  A few years after that, Mama was driving when we were in our first fender bender and I became a nervous passenger ever after.  That little girl who laid in the back of the station wagon feeling perfectly safe seemed long gone.

In the decades since those long ago car rides, some of my suspicions and fears have proved true.  For instance, you can be a perfectly safe and capable driver, and still be in a car accident.  I also know now that you can't trust another human being to always be there for you, to always protect you from the darkness.  These have not been lessons learned without scars.  Yet, I don't say these things with fear or bitterness.  In and through all of my life's dark nights of the soul, I have found the One Who is Faithful and True, the One I can always count on to be there for me and to never leave me or forsake me.  I have found the One Who illumines the darkness, Who is as sure and comforting to me in the times of darkness as a glowing lamp and a crackling fireplace on a stormy night.  I have found the one Who is a cocoon round about me, Who keeps my spirit safe from the darkness.  I haven't liked a single one of the difficulties that have taught me these things, yet to know these truths with an unshakeable certainty has proven invaluable and worth it all.  I can say with the Apostle Paul, "I know Whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep that which I've committed to Him against that day..." or even against the darkness of night.

still following,
  


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14 comments:

  1. Hi Elizabeth,
    I am following you from Women2Women. Great post and it is amazing how ... finally ... knowing Jesus can keep us in that calmness where everything else may not.
    Blessings,
    Janis

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    1. Yes, my walk with God definitely has become my refuge, my calm place!

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  2. Yes, I am afraid to say that going through those hard things and times seem to be where my growth, spiritually, comes from. My Daddy did not walk away but died when I was 12. I began a journey that included not trusting men. I came to believe that they might leave me, thus I left many a relationship before they could leave me. I did not see that then, but certainly did after my first marriage ended and counseling ensued.
    Praising God for my Savior now though for He will NEVER leave me and I do not have to run away first. I can be peaceful and safe in His arms.

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    1. Linda, thank you for sharing honestly some of what you've been though. I, too, brought issues into our marriage from my dad leaving me. Thank goodness for God's help and grace and healing in my life.

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  3. "I haven't liked a single one of the difficulties that have taught me these things, yet to know these truths with an unshakeable certainty has proven invaluable and worth it all." That is a truth I relate to, Elizabeth. People fail us, but God is certain and true, and all together wonderful. Great to see you at Holley's today. Blessings!

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    1. Thank you so much for coming by my blog, and for leaving some encouragement behind!

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  4. I'll just chime in with Tiffany above and say yes and amen!~the hardest-won lessons are the ones that go deep.
    (I remember those kinds of rides in the car feeling happy and safe and protected-those are precious memories, indeed.)

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    1. "The hardest won lessons are the ones that go deep"-painful, but true, my friend!

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  5. I understand the "Dark Night of the Soul." It's bitter and deep and I have found that even when I shook my fist in the face of God (I'm so sorry now!), I am amazed at this faithfulness. He loves us with an everlasting love. My story is one of a different kind and harder in some ways. My mom was a Preacher's Wife of a Preacher man. I was a strong willed child. She would whip me with a switch that made blood run down my leg or with daddy's belt that left whelps. I suffered at her hands.She would slap me in the face and every time I wanted to yell, I hate you. Years later, my mama realized her failure and she too lived with the regret of trying to be all things to all people in the church and have a perfect child. She was my best friend as an adult. When she died 5 years ago, I had to deal and call it what it was, abuse. I had to forgive her all over again. I did. She loved my children and made us with them what she didn't do with me. God is a God of healing, emotional, physcial, and spiritual. He is faithful. I hate that my mama suffered from regret. I assured her often that I was okay. The fact is, I was diagnosed with Bipolar later in life and had she known how to deal with me, I'm sure she would have done things differently. Back then, they didn't know what to do. I'm glad you have found healing in Jesus. He is always enough.

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    1. What a difficult childhood you experienced. Thank God that He broke through in your mother's life, and that He empowered you to forgive a very hard to forgive parent. What a testimony of God's grace!

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  6. I too, go with what Tiffany and Jody have said. Life can have some hard lessons. And yes!!! There has always been one faithful one I could always count on and turn too....AMEN!!!
    ~God Bless~
    Addie

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    1. And aren't you so grateful? I sure am!

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  7. The stripping and pruning is difficult and painful. But being brought to a place where we can say from our soul, "God is Enough," is truly a blessed place to be. Inspiring post, Elizabeth!

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    1. You are so right. Sometimes I need reminded of this truth.

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