The Darkest Night Of The Year
How is your Christmas season going? Are you frantically trying to wrap things up before the weekend hits? Are you planning time with your friends and family? Are you feeling overwhelmed or struggling with sadness, grief or depression? Maybe you are thrilled it is Christmas and loving every minute! Wherever you find yourself know that it is ok to be honest, and vulnerable with your limitations at Christmas time!
Tonight is the darkest night of the year service at our local United Church here in High River and I can barely wait to go. I find something so precious about sitting with others who are willing to acknowledge their various emotional needs during a profoundly dark and cold time like the winter solstice. Winter can be a time of deep rest, of recovery and recalibration. My inner man, my soul, desperately needs this time to reflect and celebrate the past year(s) before I barrel into a new one! I go to a darkest night service because I want acknowledge that I am altered by waning light, my flesh is weak and my soul is suspect to fear and anxiety, I must look for growing light so I do not remain in the grave of winter.
Psalm 88: 6-9
You have put me in the lowest pit,
in the darkest depths.
Your wrath lies heavily on me;
you have overwhelmed me with all your waves.
You have taken from me my closest friends
and have made me repulsive to them.
I am confined and cannot escape;
my eyes are dim with grief.
Our world is a "dark place" of fear, anxiety, greed and violence.
The prophetic light exposes such destructive practices and requires us to
consider both the ideological footage of our practices and their concrete
outcomes from which we often benefit. Advent is a time for being
addressed "from elsewhere" and being unsettled."
Gift and Task
Special photo credit Kyle Wong via Unsplash