Tuesday, February 10, 2009

The Light Shines in the Darkness........

John 1: 5

The light shines in the darkness,
and the darkness can never extinguish it.

It's a shocking thing to hear about lives being lost in tragic bushfires that are still burning today. No one knows what the final tally of lost lives will be and the number of people horribly injured by burns remains unknown. Families have lost dear loved ones. They have lost their beloved pets, their homes, all their personal possessions and their businesses. They are homeless, without clothing or personal items or any of the things we all take for granted in our daily lives. Our hearts and prayers go out to them all. There are no words of comfort to ease their pain and loss. Their pain must be unspeakable. Words seem so inadequate and yet we struggle to find a way to help. We do what we can. We pray they find supernatural strength and comfort.

I can't help but feel a little like I did after 9/11 and the Canberra bushfires six years ago. I stop and contemplate my life and the blessings I enjoy. I am thankful my home and family are not under threat. I pity people who can't spare a thought for the suffering of others, who focus on inconsequential trivia as if it were important. It makes me angry. I feel less tolerant of fools and more motivated not to be one myself. I feel helpless and yet empowered to make my life, my family, my relationships better, more loving, more real, more meaningful because life is short.

My faith grows. I cry because innocent people are suffering. I cry for those who do not know the comfort of a loving God and the peace He gives so willingly when we are hurting and in pain and confused about what the future holds. I know He is my rock and my fortress, He is my provider and comforter. He knows all about pain and loss and anguish. He lived it. He lived it for me. He lived it so I would know how much I am loved today, how much no darkensss or fire or fear can ever come between He and I. He lived it for you. His light lights our way and we can walk safely, in good times and hard times, His love is constant, He is faithful even when we are faithless and when we look for answers to life's tough questions, He holds them all.

Sometimes there are no earthly answers. Without Jesus it's all just ashes.