Although I love the coolness and color of fall, I’ve got to admit that the end of Daylight Savings time is a struggle for me. I remember my dad complaining about this when I was a kid and thinking, “What’s the big deal? You get another hour of sleep.” That was probably when I was a teenager and had no regular sleep schedule and thereby no internal clock that could be messed with.
But now, oh my. The kids are cranky and I’m dragging. Even the dog seems disoriented. And there just seems to be something worse about all the darkness being at the end of the day.
When its dark in the morning, you at least know that light is coming soon. Now however, when the sun goes down in the evening there is the sinking knowledge that all that lies before us is hours and hours of dark night. It is enough to get you down.
Add to that the forces of darkness that are swirling in my midst. So many of the people I love and care for are struggling with sickness and sadness. My heart aches for them. Just when I think we can’t hold any more, another diagnosis comes in or another crisis hits. The waves of darkness just keep rolling in.
At some point I got tired of feeling defeated by the darkness and decided to take action. I decided to fight back with these.
I refuse to call them Christmas lights as I’m Episcopalian and we definitely don’t start decorating for Christmas this early. But now I understand why people do.
For when the darkness threatens, sometimes what you have to do is fight back with shafts of light.
For night does not have the last the word here. We must remember that though darkness grows for a time, a day will come when the light will return overtake it.
So today we wreathed our home in what I’m affectionately calling solstice lights. I’m wrapping them around the room where we eat and work and pray. Right there with the backpacks and penguin mug. Because I want to remember the truth that darkness grows but never wins. That even in dark times, I remain a child of the light.
If you too are struggling with the darkness, I pray you will find some light of your own to cling to and wield through the long nights.
For more readings on light in the darkness and finding hope in difficult times, I offer you my advent devotional. May it bring you comfort in the upcoming season.