“For men loved the darkness rather than the light.” (Jn. 3:19 ESV)
What is it about darkness? What draws us to it? As a moth to a flame so is man drawn to darkness. I attended a small church in a coal mining community in eastern Kentucky several years ago. The pastor was out of town so another man from the church preached that morning. He was a vibrant but slight man, typical coal miner look. No sooner had he started speaking he began to cry, a sincere cry that was driven by being overwhelmed with grace. He bemoaned being drawn to darkness. His task as a coal miner was to explore especially narrow and tight crevasses thousands of feet below the surface of the earth. He did this alone with someone at the other end of a tether. The tether was of little use if he became stuck or trapped because he went places that no machine or sizable man could ever access in short order. He further described the places that he explored as absolute darkness, wet, dirty, lonely and very dangerous, but he loved it. He had to admit that the very things that make it an ominous job were the very same things that attracted him to it. He then yelled, “And that’s the way sin is, the very things that make sin dangerous and dirty are the same things that attract us to it.” He then pointed out that it is our nature to love darkness more than light.
As long as we are not willing to bring our doubts, fears, anxiety and sin into the light Satan has us right where he wants us. Our lack of willingness to become vulnerable by confessing and trusting others keeps us locked in a prison of pride and shame. Not admitting that your marriage is just barely hanging on will eventually ruin your intimacy, your desire and your marriage. Not admitting that you have alienated your children through misplaced priorities will keep them insecure, undone and unsettled about themselves and God. Continually wearing the mask of “got it all together” will keep you from having real friendships and create contempt for you from others that know you. But when we drag these areas of weakness into the light of God’s truth and grace He begins to fix them. It may hurt just as our eyes struggle to adjust to a bright light after emerging from darkness. But the bonds that Satan had upon us are broken. Our conscience begins to ease and our ability to focus on others rather than self becomes stronger. Identify the areas of your life that are dominated by darkness and, by faith, drag them into the light and let God do His restoration work.