Hope On The Longest Night


Today marks the Winter Solstice. The day when the earth’s orbit around the sun causes a shift in light across the earth. For those of us in the Northern Hemisphere, the Winter Solstice is also known as the Longest Night of the Year.

As the leaves have turned and fallen, so have our nights grown. In the northern most reaches of our world, it seems as if darkness might overtake us all together.

It is like that sometimes, though isn’t it? Life gets dark.

Someone dies.

A job goes bad or away altogether.

A relationship sours.

Or for some unknown reason our souls just get sad.

As the darkness descends and grows we may wonder if it will settle in and stay forever.

Hope on the Longest Night

 

But there is promise in the darkest night. For after it has its say, a shift occurs.

The sun begins to reign again and come gradually, surely back into our lives.

Reminding us that though night may come with its darkness and difficulty, it will not last forever.

For the Light Always Wins.

But for this one night, we remember the dark and we let it have its say. For it is a reality in our lives.

In modern times folks have taken to gathering in churches or around fires to remember their sadness.

As I shared in Lighten the Darkness:

“We huddle in the dark, cold night and hold our grief collectively before us. We let our brokenness sing its needed song. But then a wonderful thing happens. Even this longest darkest night comes to an end.”

. . . . “So hold on you dear ones: you with the piles of disappointment and you with the broken hearts. Yes, the night is cold and it seems as if it will never lift. But sadness is not forever. Our good news tells us that the last words are always words of hope. So huddle with your blankets and feel your pain, but know that it is healing, deep in the secret places where even the trees cannot see.”

Thomas Merton advent poem