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I’m sitting here in that deadly calm, caught between two storms, waiting for the next shoe to drop and pondering how metaphorical that is for so much of my life. While that may well be my physical reality, it is not my spiritual one, not anymore. It use to be, it used to be my entire state of being, waiting for the next shoe to drop, trying to seek shelter in the eye of the storm where things are quiet, peaceful.

Freedom, He came to set the captives free and I have been freed of that anxiety, that pressure, that fear. Believe it or not, I actually enjoy a good storm these days, watching them roll in and roll out, all that unleashed power, our inability to control it. Everything is so chaotic, as furious and raging as the wind, but it is okay, I have a Rock to cling to, I have peace even in the midst of these storms. What a precious gift that is because I live in an area with a lot of storms, literal and spiritual.

I am not even of this world anymore, I belong to a kingdom far away and very close too, and I was just thinking of how often that is used as an insult, “get your head out of the clouds,” face reality, as if “realism” is somehow something to be pridefully treasured. We are often so proud of our ability to face reality, forgetting that we are hardly even qualified to know what “reality” even is. We often attempt in our literature and our story telling to romanticize all the dark things, to make them fun, to rob them of their power. The Corpse Bride, for example. We are often trying to slay our own demons in our storytelling.

I am not of this world some 90% of the time, but there are moments when that darkly jaded realism rears up, when my cynicism slips out unattended. I call her the Corpse Bride because she is the residual debree left over from one too many storms and I actually love her, she has great worth and value, it is just that she is not in charge anymore. She does not rule over me.

The other day someone declared their intention to make this area the premier destination for the occult and paranormal and the Corpse Bride suddenly popped in to announce, “Well why not? We’re already the premier destination for meth and heroin addiction, let’s see if we can find anymore darkness to unleash. I mean, what could possibly go wrong there?”

It will be fun, they try to reassure me, these things are not real, they don’t have any power, but the Corpse Bride knows better, she can see the dark things for real, being a dark thing herself.

People are not moths at all, we are not that smart, we do not seek the Light, we go right for the darkness every time, pouring it into the abyss of our souls, somehow fooling ourselves into believing we can master it, we can control it.

I often wonder what it is about the Light that scares us so much, that makes us want to shy away and I know it has to do with relinquishing our control, with suddenly seeing things with the harsh conviction of stage lighting that reveals every flaw, every loss, every regret, that shows us exactly as we are and not as we wish ourselves to be. But in that vulnerability, there is grace and redemption to be found, healing and wholeness.

There is beauty in the Light too, that is where all the things that are precious and special about us as people live, in the Light, not in the darkness. Freedom, healing, life and life abundant.

It is somewhat ironic to me, outside of His Light, outside of the hope of the world, we always become this cult of perpetual necrophiliacs, always trying to worship and celebrate endless themes woven around death, the Corpse Bride, Twilight, the Day of the Dead, the gothic and the melancholy. Death as a kind of anesthesia for what ails us, but it doesn’t work like that at all, not in the “real world.”

Someone smart once told me it’s really not death that people fear, but life becasue that’s where all the pain is. Pain is a sign of life. The fastest way out of pain is right through it. Dive head first right into the eye of that storm, she says with all good gallows humor, knowing full well that is always easier said than done.

It’s all good,  Jesus Christ can find you in the darkness, too. There is no place He hasn’t gone, nothing He hasn’t seen already.