Have you ever been in a dark place? An inner room that is so dark you cannot see a hand in front of your face? No moon. No street lights.
One year I volunteered to teach three year olds at church. On a Saturday afternoon, I came in to set up art projects for the following Sunday morning. Once I was done, I turned out the light.
After shutting the door, I turned around: it was pitch black. Someone had not realized I was there and shut off all the church lights. I would have to walk through that dark inner room to get out of the building.
That thought kept me frozen in place. Then I heard the Lord say,
“What do you know about this inner room?”
“What? It’s dark!”
“Yes, but what do you know about it?”
“On Sunday, it is full of tables and chairs. It’s where everyone comes after church to eat donuts and drink coffee.”
“But it’s not Sunday. What do you know about the inner room today?”
“All the tables and chairs are picked up. The room is completely empty!”
“Yes, there is nothing to get in your way. Nothing for you to stumble over. Look up.”
I couldn’t see how that was going to help.
“See that exit sign way across the room?”
“Keep looking at it and start walking.”
I took a step, then another — no tables, no chairs. Confident, I focused on the “Exit” sign in the inner room. When I reached the front door, I pushed on it. Bright sun hit my eyes. What a beautiful day!
Inner Room Reflection
As I reflected on that experience, I realized, when I am in a dark place in my spirit I can become disillusioned, confused, overwhelmed, discouraged, and isolated.
The Lord provides a small flicker of light in the inner room of my spirit to remind me, I am not alone. He gives me his presence, his power. When I forget and look instead for answers to the right or left, I see only darkness, no wisdom. That’s when I become overwhelmed. It is then that he encourages me to take it one step, one moment at a time. I know it is useless to look beyond the small ember of light that he gives. That fear of the future only puts me into a panic. I must keep my gaze on the small flame of his presence just one step ahead of me.
Once I take that step, the next will appear. But I must keep my eyes on the Light of God’s presence, believing I will not stumble or fall as long as I follow Him.
What causes you to fear, to panic and take matters into your own hands? Are you able to catch yourself? Do you realize when you have stepped ahead of the Light of your inner room: the wisdom of God’s abiding presence?
I admit it takes practice. It takes a daily reminder every morning that I am not entering the day alone. On the days that I am quick to remember, those are the days of adventure!
“And whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, ‘This is the way; walk in it.’” Isaiah 30:21
“By day the LORD went ahead of them in a pillar of cloud to guide them on their way and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light, so that they could travel by day or night.” Exodus 13:21