A Darkness We Do Not Know

As my Gramma used to say, sometimes we are taken short in the night. We find ourselves in need of the bathroom but we do not wish to awaken the rest of the house, so we do not turn on the light and we walk slowly and carefully through dark rooms until we reach the bathroom. If we are careful, we do not stumble or stub our toe, for we are walking in a darkness we know.

Such is much of life. Things are not always clear but they are for the most part routine and familiar. If we are careful we do not stumble or stub our toe. We live in a darkness we know.

But what about the new, the unexpected? How do we then walk carefully and not stumble or stub our toe?

For now we must step into a darkness we do not know. This first step takes more than care, it takes faith.

Faith is not so much the evidence of things not seen, but more of a promise not yet fulfilled. We screw our courage to the sticking place and hope to not fail. And when we succeed, we grow our faith into trust and this thing too becomes a darkness we know. If we do not succeed, we become fearful and the darkness we do not know becomes an evil to us. We know this darkness, not in what it is, but what it did to us. Our faith does not grow but changes into suspicion and dread.

We must now choose. To live in fear or again practice faith. To believe in an evil or attempt to learn a truth. Sometimes the evil is real and we pay dearly for our effort, but sometimes there is no evil, only ignorance. With care and patience we come to find this place too to be a darkness that we know.

Whichever choice we make, we must make it everyday. And with no guarantees, we make a step and learn a truth, the truth of the darkness we do not know.

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