It's dark in my house at night. Even though we live in the city, with streetlights, porch lights and occasional cars during the wee hours, the combination of blinds and sunscreens make it dark enough to stub a toe or trip over a piece of furniture. Except for that one. tiny. nightlight.
Our nightlight shines 24/7, but it's hardly noticeable during the day. It's the darkness that makes it appear to light up with a rare brilliance. That one, small beacon casts its glow to the entire house. It provides just enough lumens to let us move around at night in relative safety. Believe me, I notice when we go to bed and the bulb has burned out. And I get up immediately to screw in a new bulb.
The darker it is, the more a little light shines. What's true in my home is true in our world. Joel, an Old Testament writer rivets us with the description of the spiritual darkness in his generation. If all we get from his writing is the pain of that dark time, it would be a most depressing book! That leads to the question, "Is there ANY light available when spiritual darkness settles in upon us? Is there a way out?"
Thankfully, Joel didn't leave his people (or us) trapped in the mess. He offered a "survival guide" to get through it and come out better for it. We will find out this weekend how to turn on the light. If you can't get to Stone Ridge Church, catch the podcast on iTunes under "Stone Ridge Sermons."