Wednesday, June 10, 2009
Growth in Darkness
I stepped into the darkness of night to take the dog out and my eyes lit upon the white buds in a nearby bush. It seems they appeared after the sun went down tonight, as they weren't there before.
It occurred to me, then, how much growth takes place at night, while we sleep. God so ordered the world so that all of creation is open to receiving the light, but at night, in deprivation, the real growth occurrs.
How often we complain about suffering. How often we lament a deprivation of consolations, wanting to "feel" God close to us, or wanting to "feel like" praying or going to Mass. How often, if we don't "feel like it" we skip our devotions and obligations.
Yet, just as God ordered nature around us, He ordered us. He wants us to be open and receptive in our joy, but part of that state of reception is recognizing that the darkness will come, and it will be a time to remain hidden, holding in what we know, and waiting for the sun to rise again.
We can't grow in the spiritual life unlesss the darkness comes. We can't know true holiness if all we have known is joy and sunshine. We must know deprivation, we must experience it, and we must shudder within it, for only in this can we truly understand the fullness of God. Only in the privation of light do we ever have the chance to reflect back what we have absorbed.