What Keeps Me Going During the Dark Times

What keeps me going during those soul-parching times of wondering whether my son is alive or lying alone in a damp alley, with an empty needle by his side?

No singular answer.

Delicate words of inquiry from friends plus the sheer momentum of being part of and caring for a large family have a way of keeping the ox-cart of my life moving.

As much as I may feel I have neither the energy nor the inclination, the need to care for family and support friends can lift, like a crane, the heavy bedcovers, damp with worry, and roll me out.

At the core, I am not just sustained by the support of friends or the minutiae of daily life.

I am surprised by how much of a Christian I actually am.

Not the sentimental version of faith - just trust and everything will turn out alright. I know people continue to die of drug overdoses at a rate of one every eight hours so “just love him and it will work out” doesn’t cut it for me. Nor am I waiting for a slot-machine God who simply requires me to generate the right amount of faith or prayer before popping out a rescue.

I grow nauseous in the presence of vacuous religious rhetoric delivered, with great sincerity, from whatever part of the Christian family. And I find no sustenance from those who follow a Hollow God - “It’s all Mystery, Spirit who is everywhere and nowhere.”

The surprise was how deeply the Christian narrative of hope seasons my life. The narratives of a God who creates extraordinary galaxies, who liberates slaves from Egypt, who rails against injustice and those who oppress and enslaves - merchants of drug death beware! - and who resurrects the Righteous One, all shape me.

Does this mean I expect a Disney ending? No. The story of the crucifixion slams the brakes on simple optimism. But the conviction that the God of life and redemption is on the loose simply will not allow utter despair.

Conviction that the God of life & redemption is on the loose simply will not allow utter despair.

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Even though at times it can make the journey more difficult, I remain a prisoner of hope.

Q: What keeps you going during the hard times of life?

Who are the people who have served as orbs of Light in your life?

In what circumstances are you currently feeling called to be a point of Light?​

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