Advent Devotional – December 16

Running toward the light

The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who dwelt in a land of deep darkness, upon them has light shined.  – Isaiah 9:2


This summer, I quite literally walked in darkness. Or, to be more accurate, I ran in darkness. My friend Laura and I were training for a half-marathon which took place in October. So we got up early most mornings — she in Mount Pleasant, S.C., me in Salisbury — to attempt to beat the heat.

It helped some, but not much. I remember many mornings with 70 degree temperatures and 100 percent humidity. Whew! What a slog! The hotter it got, the earlier we started, and the darker it got.

I was fortunate to have a running partner here in town, but even on mornings where I ran by myself, I was never afraid. Maybe I was being naïve or just plain ol’ stupid, but I never had a problem. I’d run the route so many times that I could actually run it with my eyes closed if I had to. Many mornings, that felt exactly like what I was doing.

As the summer wore on, my running partner and I decided to run one night at sunset. Things were going fine, until the end of our run. It had gotten darker a lot more quickly than we had anticipated, and there we were again, running in the pitch-black dark.

I can’t tell you how happy I was to round the corner and see the full moon, giving plenty of light to our path. Mornings, too, are delightful now, as it’s sunrise before we start our route.

This experience made me realize that in the darkness or the light, God is always there with me. There’s no reason to be afraid. Even if I can’t see where I’m going — either literally or figuratively — God has already laid out the path before me. I just have to have the courage to follow it.

Dear God, help me to follow your path each day. Amen.

By Susan Shinn


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