Posts Tagged ‘despair’

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Falling into the everlasting arms of God …

June 10, 2010

I have been pretty quiet for the last couple of weeks due to some personal news that has kind of ‘rocked my world’, but thankfully, actually in a good way! About a month ago I made an application to a church in the East Midlands to work as a member of the community’s leadership team. Although the whole application and interview  process couldn’t have been done in a more friendly and civilised manner, I have to admit it was a bit of a nerve-wracking experience. Perhaps, you can imagine my surprise, elation and disbelief when after a second interview I was offered the job two weeks ago today! I was certainly pretty stunned…and honestly, overjoyed!

Since then I have been making plans to move out of Sheffield area to near Leicester and have been involved in all the throes of decisions and preparations such a life change entails. I have hopefully found accommodation for which I am making a formal written application. It’s really all good – a new start, a new church community, new friends and a new job. I’m really thrilled about it, although I still catch myself thinking is this for real and then saying, “Yes, this the real thing. It’s actually happening!”

Regarding Dark Nights White Soul, I have had to pause to think about what happens next. Dark Nights White Soul was conceived, carried and born during a period of feeling an intense sense of God’s absence in my life and enduring a real period of alienation from established Christian religion. Now suddenly I have reached the end of the proverbial black tunnel to walk out into the light of day. It is a welcome release. The warmth of God’s light and life is penetrating me deeply through the loving welcome and embrace of this new Christian church and community. It’s a wonderful sensation and touching experience.

So, is this the end of Dark Nights White Soul?

I think not. Dark Nights White Soul is my personal blog and my hope is to reach out to those in whatever circumstances of life that find themselves relating to or fully submerged in the experience of a Dark Night of the Soul. My experience has taught me, that however you feel  – God is actually still with you, in the darkness and in the pain, even if practically speaking it seems that you are completely alone…you are not. It is when you feel absolutely abandoned and isolated from all comfort and consolation that you are actually closest to the love of God, although paradoxically it seems that you are experiencing the opposite. Hold on tight, don’t let go of your hope. Even if you do let go of some of the circumstances around you. I know when my ex-wife left me, I literally felt like the ground beneath me might give way and I would fall through the core of the earth out into space and into a bottomless abyss. I felt like I was falling…and I guess in a way I was falling…falling out of and through the shattered fragments of my previous life, with no firm place or solid fixtures of a new life to hold onto. A wise and godly friend told me at the time that although I felt like I was falling, actually beneath me were the ever lasting arms of God. At the time I listened and somewhat cynically dismissed such sweetly,sentimental and contrived pseudo-spiritual teaching. I was so overwhelmed by the circumstances and how I experienced them as effecting me. Yet, looking back, my kind and gentle friend was right…the everlasting arms were beneath me…and eventually when I hit bottom they caught me.

Two and a half years later through a long journey of meeting new people and trying different ways to forge my own new success programme… and repeatedly failing…the Grace of God has put me back on solid ground with a new life, a new horizon, a new task and a new hope. I am so excited…and thankyou God and to everyone one who has helped me in both small and big ways over recent years, I am so grateful. Am I allowed the chance to express myself a little in the colloquial language of Christian sub-culture? I think I am. I’m going to give myself chance to celebrate too. Hallelujah! Amen! Thank you God, thank you family, friends and acquaintances I have met and passed like ‘ships in the night’…Halelujah! Amen! God is Good…even when it hurts and the world seems covered in the blackness of night. Even especially during those times. Thank you so much for the lesson, I hope and pray I might be able to help and comfort others going through their own desert and dark.

David

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Easter – Some personal thoughts

April 4, 2010

Light at the end of the tunnel

I write this on Easter sunday morning. It’s 8.52 am. 

The following  words are not exegesis of the Biblical text, but are simply a few personal reflections,  informed by my experience of depression, abandonment and the Dark Night of the Soul. 

It’s funny, as in funny strange, but today is perhaps the first time in about 13 years when I wont be attending Church on Easter sunday with other Christians to celebrate Jesus’ resurrection and return from the dead. 

I feel like I have been enclosed in tomb like darkness for a good two years. But recently, a little like the picture above I am beginning to walk out into the light – the light at the end of the proverbial tunnel. Truly, its been a long time coming. 

I looked through my Bible today, in vain, to see if there is any description in there of what actually happened that day, when Jesus woke up Easter morning, returned from the dead. The Bible is absolutely silent on that matter. We can only speculate and imagine. But I wager that it was an ‘unbelievable’ experience for the young man from Nazareth, who after experiencing so much of life on earth as a human being, suddenly was awoken to a different kind of existence. Heaven infusing the body of a man. “Hallelujah!” He must have thought. 

Hallelujah indeed. 

For me the Resurrection in my life is not yet complete. It is only partial. I am only now re-emerging out of the darkness. Welcoming gladly the new warmth and light. 

I won’t be attending Church this morning, simply because I haven’t got a Church family to belong to. Certainly, not one with community, close friends and with leaders I can trust.  So this Easter morning, I celebrate the new birth of the Resurrection alone and with you. After all these years, and all this struggle I have reached the end of the black tunnel. I am sure that I will be revisited by darkness again sometimes, but for now Light bathes my eyes. Spring sunlight warms my face. 

 Thank God, I think. 

 Hallelujah! Hallelujah indeed! 

‘Christ is risen today! 

Hallelujah, he is risen indeed!’