Late at night, when sleep is hard to come by, I punch the pillow and imagine the hour.
I know it’s well after midnight because the moonlight is slanting in through the blinds, just like it does after midnight. I try and not watch the slant of light, but I can’t help it. The slice of light holds my mine captive while my soul musters up the strength to beat back all the lies that come to life after dark.
Be not afraid.
I hear these three words and I say them to myself, moving my lips in the dark.
Be not afraid.
I watch the slant of light thin as my chest heaves under the weight of heaviness that I can’t put words around. Unable to breathe, I slip out of bed and walk the house. I check on six dreaming children and listen to their breathing. It’s slow and rhythmic. The lights upstairs have been left on by mistake and I switch them out. One street lamp pours into the hallway, casting shadows on the walls and floorboards and I run my hand along the shadows. Light and dark live in the same space and I live in their midst.
And I am afraid.
Not of the dark, but of the light.
All good things cast shadows and at some time after 2am, I stand full length in the shadows of a handful of good things. I stand for long minutes, choosing shadows over the light I’ve not yet fully seen or wholly touched or adequately imagined.
I find cold comfort in the fear, the doubt, the not-enough-ness, for we’ve spent years becoming well-acquainted. And the light, it dances and sways and stretches into places I don’t quite know yet and it ripens things in me I’m not yet ready to let bloom. Why bloom when the cool shadows beckon me to come and sit a while?
I slip down the stairs, back between the sheets, back to where the sliver of moonlight is no more, and I stare at the ceiling.
And the thrum of my heart pounds ever so quietly.
For I know the Light and He is not safe.
But He is good.
And he is calling to me,
Be not afraid.
Tomorrow, I whisper into the dark,
Tomorrow, I’ll not be afraid.
This is my humble offering to Lisha’s beautiful community. Swing on by…you’ll be so glad you did.
*On Wednesday, I will post the second post in my short series, We Are Fellowship. And I’m having a hard time finding my words. Last week’s post and this week’s post are not my most favorite things to write. I truly did not sleep last night for fear of writing the hard things. I write in story and the posts that call me to write from a this is what I know to be true place are very hard for me to write. If you have a minute, could you pray I find my words laced with grace and truth and that Jesus would simply write His story here? The more I write and the more Jesus calls me into me into brighter edges of light, the more aware I am of the weight of the words I choose to write. This new found edge of light frightens me and I am a beggar in need of grace and the prayers of the saints. I humbly thank you.