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  • Writer's pictureIain Johnston

There is Light

Night had well and truly settled in.

Summer had certainly made itself known that day. It’s heat had bathed the land and signs of life scurried to and fro. Birds, animals, man, woman and child had soaked in the light of day, working, learning, growing, playing, foraging

, building, creating, existing.

The sun had set to the smell of bbq’s, the splash of backyard pools, friends and family stretching back on porches with cool beverages and tall tales.

Twilight had weaved its magic over the land, awakening the nocturnal and ushering in gradual stillness as lives succumb to rest.

I remember the night well.

A small, yet significant moment touched my soul that night.

The evening was well into its purposes. An owl had perched on the corner of the house. Crickets were singing their song to the heavenly blanket of stars that stretched the full length of the sky.

I was a night owl myself. Often up long after everyone had sunk deep into their mattresses, lying still in their rest.

And it dawned on me - another random thought that often comes at me from the blindside. That book I wanted to read again was packed away in a box in the third garage.

On one side of the house was the double garage. On the other, a drive through single garage, where my car was parked. A remote garage door fronted the street of the single garage, while a manual garage door opened up into the back yard and was accessible beside the outdoor entertainment area of the house.

I knew that if I didn’t go and get the book now, in what was probably the early hours of the morning, I would continue to forget to go and get it, like I had already done the previous two weeks.

I left what I was doing on the lounge beside me, stepped outside into the darkness of the night and flicked the light switch that would flood the back yard with a soft glow.

But one bulb in the light had blown and so the glow was softer than normal.

Barefooted, I meandered my way along the footpath and opened the manual garage door all the way and peered into the bowels of the pitch black car cave before me.

I couldn’t see a thing. I could barely make out the car occupying most of the blackness before me.

The light switch was unfortunately positioned at the other end of the garage, but I also knew this garage inside out. I toyed with the idea of retrieving a torch from the house, but dismissed the idea and began shuffling into the darkness.

My left hand found the cabinet against the wall, my right hand found the car.

My shin found the bike peddle.

My toe found the box of tiles.

I stumbled, grimaced and shuffled my way into the darkness until I had reached the other end of the garage. My hand groped for the light switch, found it, flicked it and I was bathed in luminescent light.

The box of books were next to me, I rifled through the top, found the intended novel, flicked off the light switch and turned back the way I had come expecting the same journey out that I had in.

But this time, I could see everything. I stopped.

Of course, it was all shadow. But I could make out the car, the boxes, the tiles on the floor, the shelving units and cabinets.

I walked cautiously still, but far more confidently than my entry.

A few seconds later, I stood at the garage door, completely taken by what I had seen.

Maybe the outside light had flickered on full strength??


Perhaps the moon had come out from behind a cloud??

No. It was a star filled night. No clouds to hide the moon.

I looked back into the garage.

Complete blackness.

Again, I shuffled my way into the back of the garage and turned and looked back.

I could see everything.

And it dawned on me.

The light wasn’t changing. The small amount of light coming into the garage wasn’t adjusting.

My position was the key.

The direction I faced determined whether I could see or whether my vision was challenged by darkness.

The same amount of light was in the darkness, whatever direction I faced.

The same amount of darkness consumed the garage.

But when I faced the darkness, I couldn’t see.

When I faced the light, I could.

And this simple, yet profound truth took hold of my soul.

Darkness is inevitable.

In fact, this world is consumed by it.

Greed. Selfishness. Power lust. Lies. Deception. War.

Slavery. Sex trafficking of adults and children. Addictions. Alcoholism. Pornography.

Disease. Sickness. Starvation. Poverty.

Bullying. Racism. Hate. Bitterness. Betrayal.

Hopelessness. Anxiety. Stress.

The winter seasons and storms of life.

But what are our hearts and minds fixed on?

What is our focus?

Because in the midst of all that darkness, there is Light.

Light that breaks through the darkness.

Light that helps lead you out of the darkness.

Light that helps you navigate the darkness.

Light that gives hope. Light that gives purpose.

Light that gives belief that the darkness is not all there is.

Light that disperses the darkness if we let it shine bright enough.

Humanity has an extraordinary potential for shining its light.

Generosity. Selflessness. Truth. Honesty. Servant heart.

Love. Acceptance. Celebration of humanity. Faithfulness. Goodness.

Gentleness. Joy. Self control. Peace. Compassion. Kindness. Patience.

Is the darkness too great for the goodness of humanity to break through its shadowy consuming nature?

Evil begets evil.

Darkness begets darkness.

The very essence of all darkness, is selfishness.

Darkness takes from you. Sucks from you. Drains you.

The more it does, the more you have to be self focussed to survive.

Until you too become selfish.

Darkness begets darkness.

But goodness also begets goodness.

Selflessness begets selflessness.

Love begets love.

Human goodness is inevitably flawed. There are still shadows that linger in the goodness.

So the war against darkness seems lopsided - in the favour of darkness.

But what if??

What if there was Love so pure that it shakes darkness - and hate and anger flee from it’s presence?

What if there was Joy so overflowing, that anger and bitterness are swept away in its unending flow?

What if there was Peace that dispersed fear, anxiety, stress... Peace so stilling that it cannot be rationalised?

What if there was Goodness so strong that the evil in man is trampled and put to death by a power it cannot defeat?

The tide would turn, would it not?

Suddenly, darkness is on the run.

Suddenly darkness no longer has the upper hand.

Suddenly darkness is fleeing.

In the darkest, most painful season of my life... when storms were unrelenting, when the winter was long, cold and lonely, when humanity crashed its darkness upon me with wave after wave... I had a choice.

To face and embrace the darkness.

Or keep my eyes focused on Light.

My humanity was not strong enough to weather the storm and darkness and chaos that besieged my life.

My life and light should have well and truly been snuffed out.

A million times over.

But I kept my eyes on the One who’s Love is pure and unfailing, who’s Love is relentless and unconditional.

I did not take my eyes off the One who is greater than any storm, stronger than any force coming against me, who’s very Nature overcomes darkness with an Authority that darkness flees from.

I called to Him.

Every day.

And every day, He drew near to this broken, frail, withered, hurting, floundering existence that I was.

He never failed me.

He is the Light that this world needs. He is the Light that will push back darkness and drive it back to the depths of hell where it belongs.

He is the Light that darkness flees from.

He is the Light that speaks Identity and Purpose into my soul that cannot be shaken by any force or storm or power on this earth.

He is the Light that transforms the darkest of human souls into a beacon of hope for others needing to be illuminated from their own consuming darkness.

He offers us His Incomparable Love to flow through us into all those around us.

He offers us an exceeding Joy that is not governed by our circumstances.

He offers Peace that transcends all understanding.

Patience that extends to the struggling, to lift them out of their darkness.

Kindness and Goodness that breaks through barriers in a demonstration of Love that declares that a human soul is the most valued and treasured thing on this earth.

Faithfulness that will never abandon another and cast the horrors of betrayal further than the east is from the west.

Gentleness so strong and resilient that it counteracts the aggressions of anger, hate, forcefulness.

And self control that stands so firm that nothing can tempt you or entice you to slide, even temporarily, into the shadows of the darkness of human nature.

I am a testament to this miracle.

A living and walking example of the Divine pouring into my life to bring healing, comfort, strength, hope, assurance and Identity.

Sometimes Light needs to drive out the darkness within.

Sometimes Light needs to push back against the darkness relentlessly buffering us from outside ourselves.

My experience of darkness battered me from all directions.

Howling, screaming and pressing in.

But the Light within pushed back against the darkness, while also healing me from within. And while securing me from within, it purged the shadows of my human nature... imperfections, insecurities, confusions, stains of the human nature that don’t belong in the Light.

I want the Light to overcome every nook and cranny of my being - because no shadow of the soul bares with it anything that is good for the human heart or soul.

I am restored.

Put back together.



Because Light dispersed the darkness.

And that Light remains. A Living extension of the Divine within me.

Its name ... His name... is Jesus.

And what a beautiful, powerful name it is!!

He is the Light that will conquer the darkness... in you... and around you.

Will you look to the darkness? Will you face turn your back to the luminescent light and continue to walk into the darkness?

Or will you turn and walk towards the Light and see the darkness disperse in the glow?

The darkness will resist. It will press in harder.

It will try to douse your flame.

Only because it knows it is no match for the Light within you.

And it will... if you let it.

Resist the darkness.

Welcome the Light... and let it shine brightly within.

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