Finding Presence In Darkness

In the 43 years I’ve lived I can honestly say that this is one of the strangest and most unknown periods.  The worldwide impact of and response to the coronavirus is jaw-dropping.  We are having to isolate ourselves from our jobs, our schools, our friends, our families and more.  It is so very easy to succumb to anxiety, fear and depression.  These are not of God.  These are of the world and not meant for our good.  God is for us, loves us and is full of light and hope.

I was reminded of something Luna Lovegood tells Harry Potter in the movie, The Order of the Phoenix.  “Well if I were You-Know-Who, I’d want you to feel cut off from everyone else; because if it’s just you alone, you’re not as much of a threat.”  That is what Satan especially wants right now, for us to feel alone, cut off and afraid.  We lose hope then.  We lose our trust in the One who is really in charge. However, this isolation, for our good and the good of our neighbors, doesn’t have to be an isolation that damages us.

Have you seen the videos people are posting of neighbors across the world sharing music together from their balconies?  A friend posted a video of a bagpiper walking the streets of her neighborhood and blessing everyone with his music.  People are choosing to be the light in this experience.  Healthcare workers and their families, businesses that are remaining open to serve our basic needs and teachers providing distance learning are being this light.  Neighbors, and strangers for that matter, are sharing their energy online to help us not feel alone.  Artists are giving free online classes, authors are reading to children on Facebook, musicians are giving free streaming concerts, our youth are sharing their nature finds on their outdoor walks and easy recipes are being offered up.  There are many other examples of kindness and caring if we but look.

Do you know what else helps to push the darkness back, what will shield our minds and spirits in this time of trouble?  Jesus’ presence in us and through us.  Natalie Grant, one of my favorite Christian artists, recently released a new song entitled “My Weapon“.  I’ve shared the lyrics below because this is my prayer right now, this very minute.

Let every lie be silenced
And all depression cease
Let every dark assignment
Bow down at Jesus’ feet

Let every curse be broken
Let every storm be tamed
And all that come against us
Be bound in Jesus’ name

Chorus – Your presence is my greatest weapon
Pushing back the darkness
Breaking every chain
My worship opens up the heavens
Crushing every stronghold
When I speak Your name
‘Cause Your presence is my weapon
Your presence is my weapon

Your strength will not be shaken
Your love will not back down
Death has been defeated
What can stop me now?

I hold on to what You’ve spoken
You said that I am free
You’ve given me Your promise
And You are my victory

Chorus

Your word and a melody
Are making a way for me
You defeat the enemy
This prison is shaking now
And these walls are coming down
Your presence makes me free
I am free

Chorus

When we feel alone and separated, physically or not, it is Jesus’ presence that is our life preserver and weapon.  It is Jesus bringing His light into the world that will save our minds and spirits.  Hold onto His presence and share it with others.  Peace be with us all.

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