Devotion: Stumbling in the Darkness

“I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” John 8:12

It hit me the other night…literally and metaphorically.

As I tried to navigate through the kids’ playroom in the dark, I began to understand what Jesus meant when he talked about those who are in darkness. I thought I understood the layout of the room. I’d been in it many times. I knew the general direction I needed to head.

As I stumbled through the darkness, I’d figured that my body would sense any impediment and redirect me. I knew there were some things to avoid. However, after banging my shin into the hardened corner of the train table, I should have realized that “feelings” are not helpful guides.

Though hobbling, I falsely assumed that I knew where the major obstacles were and could continue my journey without further injury. Little did I realize that my kids had played Legos that afternoon. My knowledge was insufficient, because scattered throughout the room were those devilish tiles that transform into razor-like spikes in the darkness. My “knowledge” of the room was also an ineffective guide.

Culturally, we have become dependent on “feelings” and “knowledge” as our life’s guides. “Be true to you” we tweet and tattoo. “Do what feels right; you know what’s best for you,” Oprah and Dr. Phil and Dr. Oz coach us. But in darkness, feelings will not prevent us from banging into obstacles, and knowledge will not reveal the hidden dangers.

Sadly, that night I could have prevented the pain by simply trusting the one thing I had in my hand. I happened to be carrying a flashlight (well technically a flashlight that was also a phone, music player, internet machine, camera, and Candy Crusher), however, my pride and laziness kept me from turning it on. I know this room, I proudly thought. I’m almost there, became my lazy excuse. And so I stumbled to bed, humbled by my foolishness.

While we stumble, bumble, fumble and rumble through the darkness of life, we have access to a greater Light. Rather than being misled by our feelings, or duped by our knowledge, we can surrender our hearts to Christ. Then we receive the True Light of Life that gives direction.

When have your feelings misled you? When has your knowledge been insufficient? Are you walking in the light or stumbling through the darkness?

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