Thursday, July 25, 2019

Surviving in Dark Places

An article originally published in the August newsletter of the Anglican Church of the Holy Trinity, North Augusta, SC:

Back in my electrical engineering days, I was the interim manager of a power generation and transmission system on the island of New Guinea. It was a great assignment that I thoroughly enjoyed, although it was not without its personal, cultural and spiritual challenges.  Even though it was to be a very short assignment, I told my company I would take it if Nancy could come with me.  Nancy couldn’t believe I told them that! Nonetheless, she packed her bags, and off we went.

The region was a spiritually oppressive place with most of the people being either Muslim or native Animist.  Since Nancy and I were used to living in the Light of Christ, it was not hard to perceive the darkness. We knew we were aliens in a foreign land, both literally and spiritually. 

Looking back on it, I can list three things that helped spiritually sustain us:
·   First was our willingness to boldly and unreservedly be Christian in spite of the darkness, remembering who we are and whose we are.  This meant loving people right where they were, being different from the culture when we needed to be, and being unafraid and vocal about our relationship with Christ.

·   Secondly was staying in Scripture and continuing to seek the mind of Christ in all things and in all ways.

·   And last but not least, was finding other Christians with whom to fellowship, worship and continue to grow spiritually. There were not many of us in that place, but Jesus said that when two or three are gathered in His name, He will be in the midst of them.  So true!

But one does not have to go 11 time zones away to find spiritual darkness.  We are living in the midst of it right here, right now.  If you and I are not careful and intentional about our life in Christ, the darkness can consume us.  You and I are part of the People of the Light in a dark land.  What are you doing to stand firm in your faith and flourish in your life and relationship in Christ?                                                         Father Rob