“The darker the night, the brighter the stars,
The deeper the grief, the closer is God!”
― Fyodor Dostoyevsky (1821–1881)
HOW DO WE truly know God? Well, for all the God-fearers on this planet, over all its centuries, from all the cultures and creeds of humanity, there might be a million and more answers to that question.
I have my own answer. To know God is to be decomposed, then reconstructed.
I believe it to be biblically true. We look to Job and his life featured decomposition and reconstruction, from the base of his character up. He was built up in God, but only after he had been crushed.
Having been crushed by life – not by God – because God does not crush us – we know the difference is like night and day. The old life is the night. We could barely see a thing. But as the dawn broke, through the calamity of a hellish circumstance, that very dawn carried us to God by its light. Suddenly we were unable to look back; we could only seek for, see, and yearn for God.
At the dawn – the dawning of us as true persons of unique and characterised personage of Christ – when we were reborn – we experienced something that can only be described as an invasion.
Life invaded us, but so, in turn, did God!
Life came at us with a terrible circumstance, but God neither left us nor forsook us. Life sought to destroy us, but God came in to save us.
The deeper this grief – though it is a blasphemy to speak glibly – the truer our experience of the true and living God.
God came in, and, though we may not have previously invited him, we could not live without him now.
Darkness is its own blessing – not in and of itself – for it is evil – but God contorts the wiles of the enemy into the very material of salvation. In this is the victory, that the further we are stretched – so long as we surrender to the incoming will of God – the more we may be saved, and the closer we may be made to the God of our salvation.
Life came at us with a terrible circumstance, but God neither left us nor forsook us. Life sought to destroy us, but God came in to save us. The dark of night ushered in the truth of the morning – God never closer as we sought him!
© 2013 S. J. Wickham.