Did Darkness Win?

About a dozen young adults from my church circled up around a fireplace. Our gathering of fellowship purposed to discus the topic of how a Christian should deal with trials.

This idea of suffering wasn’t a distant, abstract idea. Each person in the circle had grappled with a personal trial — or that of a friend’s — recently. It’s reality in this broken, fallen world.

As I scanned the faces of my friends, I realized that these scenarios of suffering didn’t have Hallmark endings. They didn’t make sense, they weren’t resolved and they were shrouded in questions. I ached for all of them.

But I left my friends’ home feeling so confident because the unity of truth shared from each person from different parts of Scripture. The verses brought up for discussion equipped us and testified to ONE thing:

God gives joy regardless of circumstances, and His goodness does not change.

No one was there to collect self-pity, but to acknowledge the One bringing us through the heartache. Because of this, there was peace and joy in the room.

This is just a glimpse of what was shared (I wish I had taken better notes!):

  • I am commanded to not lose heart even though my outer man is decaying. Why? Because this momentary, light affliction produces for us an eternal weight of glory (2 Corinthians 4:16-17).  What a privilege to go through momentary, light affliction when the promise tied to it is an unimaginable mass of glory!   
  • It may seem that darkness has won, but in Him there is no darkness at all (1 John 1:5).
  • Romans 8:18, “For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us.” There is no comparison! Our suffering is not meaningless. 
  • Jesus Christ is the Man of Sorrows. He can adequately claim that He fully understands our pain and sorrow because He carried the full weight of it to the cross.
  • Remember what Shadrack, Meshack and Abed-nego replied to the king’s rage that they wouldn’t bow down to him? They said, “O Nebuchadnezzar… If it be soour God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the furnace of blazing fire; and He will deliver us out of your hand, O king. But even if He does not, let it be known to you, O king, that we are not going to serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up” (Daniel 3:16-17).

To end the night of fellowship, we listened to the song “Even If” by MercyMe.

“I know You’re able and I know You can
Save through the fire with Your mighty hand
But even if You don’t
My hope is You alone
I know the sorrow, and I know the hurt
Would all go away if You’d just say the word
But even if You don’t
My hope is You alone
You’ve been faithful, You’ve been good
All of my days
Jesus, I will cling to You
Come what may
‘Cause I know You’re able
I know You can.”

Darkness has not won and it can not win.

Photo by Julia Revitt

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