On the plane to Europe, I watched, enchanted, as the sun rose over waves of white clouds. From the top, the massive cloud coverage looked like brilliant cotton pillows or rows of whipped cream. What a change when the plane dove toward the Zürich airport. We penetrated the clouds and the cabin instantly darkened. For the next weeks, the only time I saw the sun was when we drove to a mountaintop to hike, or spent a weekend in an Alpine ski village.
Almost everyone I talked with complained or apologized for the glum weather, and I’m sure many are plagued with SAD. (Seasonal Affective Disorder, caused by lack of sunlight)
The constant grey sky and frequent fog cover, people walking huddled against the damp cold, and the predominance of black clad citizens admittedly can be depressing.
I’m flying home next week, back to sunny, warm Florida, flip-flops and sandals and sunglasses. Though the damp cold does get to the bones, the ever-present fog hasn’t really bothered me.
I know this is only temporary.
And I know where I’m heading.
How very sad it would be to live in the fog forever.
To live without the hope of warmth and light.
I feel for my daughter and her friends and their desire for sunshine.
I feel even more for those who always live in the fog, whose lives are circumscribed by their own wants and drives, who search for meaning and find only emptiness, who reach out for life and come up with empty hands.
It doesn’t have to be that way.
Just as Tracey and I chose to go up the mountain to walk Caitlin in the sunshine, any human being can choose the light.
Even when it feels like we are surrounded by darkness.
I could say discover your inner child, or seek your own peace and tranquility. I could encourage you to get more exercise and eat a healthy diet. Make friends. Volunteer. Find a hobby. Those are good and helpful, but don’t bring us into the sunshine.
I only know one way. Sometimes it starts with a mountaintop experience. Sometimes it is a cry in the night. Sometimes it is a gentle climb into the light.
But the path is the same. The way out of darkness.
By entering through faith into what God has always wanted to do for us—set us right with him, make us fit for him—we have it all together with God because of our Master Jesus. And that’s not all: We throw open our doors to God and discover at the same moment that he has already thrown open his door to us. We find ourselves standing where we always hoped we might stand—out in the wide open spaces of God’s grace and glory, standing tall and shouting our praise.
And we discover that we don’t even do the climbing. We are carried into the light.
What a God we have! And how fortunate we are to have him, this Father of our Master Jesus! Because Jesus was raised from the dead, we’ve been given a brand-new life and have everything to live for, including a future in heaven—and the future starts now! God is keeping careful watch over us and the future. The Day is coming when you’ll have is all-life healing and whole.