If I’ve had a bad day of writing (meaning what I’ve tried to put on the page, if anything, makes me cringe and want to throw my laptop across the room) I’m learning that one of the best things I can do is to switch gears. I go downstairs to my exercise mat and weights, turn on some loud music, and sweat it out. Working out takes me out of my head where I feel defeated, and into my body where I feel present and strong and happy.
I think I need to take these actions in my faith journey, too. Sometimes my faith is challenged. Maybe I have doubts, or I’ve experienced some sort of loss, or I’m just having a bad day and need to set things right again.
It can be a scary place to be in, when things that once felt sturdy and secure all of a sudden start to shake. When this happens I am reminded to come back to the beginning. To the truth that is written in John 1:
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.
– John 1:1-5 NIV
These beautiful, life-giving words remind me that God, the source of everything, is good. He is good now, he always has been good, and he always will be good. Christ was there from the beginning, and his light still shines in us today. It is his goodness that pursues me and beckons to me. Keep looking up child, keep searching, keep opening your heart to me.
This is the truth that the apostle John wants us to remember: That God is light; in him is no darkness at all. (1 John 1:5 NIV)
We may not be sure of many things, but let’s be sure of this. Even when that goodness seems very far off, even in the middle of the storm, we hold tight to what we have been promised.
When I have drifted from the truth, what will remind me of who I am and whose I am? Despite my circumstances, what will remind me that God is light and in him is no darkness at all?
Maybe it means going on a hike, or taking a drive to watch the sunset, talking with a close friend or cooking a delicious meal. I like to tiptoe into my boys’ rooms at night and spend a few minutes watching them sleep. In this moment of beauty and peace I am reminded that Christ is alive and he is in us (Colossians 1:27), and how good that is.
You are a child of God, and always will be, even when you don’t believe it. – Richard Rohr
Whatever brings awareness to this truth, may we go there often. When we do, our lives can be a reminder to those we meet that there is a light that shines, and a goodness that is in control, and a love that is always calling out our name.