When you look at a light, do you see the light? Or, when you turn on a light, does the light being on allow you to see it? What I love about these questions is that it demonstrates my inner experience.
When I am brutally honest with myself, I am insecure, anxious and full of doubt. I compare myself to others. I feel the need to compete with others. This part of me loves to hold grudges. It is cynical. It struggles forgiving others. This is the darkness within me.
When I am willing to be honest about myself, I am compassionate, caring and confident. I love being in the service of others. There is a part of me that cannot say no to love. I am extremely patient. I live in remarkable hope. I say yes to life. This is the light within me.
When I am willing to be honest, I love the darkness. There is a part of me that loves feeling entitled to things. It loves to feel justified. It loves to take offense to others actions. It loves being right.
Again, with the honesty thing, I love the light. There is something about others where I am found. Where I know I am loved, cared for and embraced. And, I extend this to others.
The light is always on, but, sometimes I don’t want to see it. Because, I live in darkness, I can choose to hind underneath the covers and not want to see it. But, because the light is always on, I can acknowledge who I really am. Who God is in me. The compassionate, caring, confident person that I am.
And, when I allow my light to face my darkness. Its not a combative war. As John’s Gospel points out, the light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it. So, my light readily embraces the darkness. As the light says to the dark “Come near my friend, I have missed you.”
Being willing to embrace and love our own darkness, allows light to win. As Richard Rohr says “the only way to perfection, is to perfectly accept our imperfection.”
Being willing to embrace and love our own darkness, will allow others to share and love their own.
We’re light. We’re darkness.
All is loved and accepted by the One who allows it.