God can shed light and warmth on the dark, cold nights of life

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By Jon Rohr

when life seems like a dreary winter day. It is grey, cheerless, and bitterly cold. The sun hides its face for days on end and the cold seems to seep into both bones and heart. Perhaps you have had those times.

Some have called this feeling the “long dark night of the soul.” On those days it seems that smiles are hard to come by and our prayers just bounce back off the ceiling. Our minds become filled with doubts and dark fears and the light of truth and hope seem only a dark flicker barely visible in the distance. We all share this experience from time to time, and some more than others.

There is a phrase in the King James Bible that I simply love.

The newer translations say things like, “when the time was right”, or “in the course of time,” or even “Some time later.” But in the poetry of the King James Version it reads “It came to pass.” In over 450 verses we find that particular phrase, and somehow it helps me.

What a beautiful way to put it! Our struggles and trials are temporary, they only come to pass. The pain that I feel today will pass. The loneliness that overwhelms will pass. The sorrow I feel today, it will pass.

And there is something else we need to know, that dark night, that moment of doubt or fear, it is not because God has abandoned or forgotten us. It is simply that in our own frail humanity we are sometimes blind and deaf to his presence. We read in Hebrews “God has said, ‘Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.’” (Heb 13:5 NIV)

Whether we feel it or recognize it, God does not abandon us. When we face those dark moments in life, remember, “It came to pass,” and trust in the Lord’s promise. Lamentations says, “Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” (La 3:22-23 NIV) He is always faithful; He will never let us go or forget us.