I’m currently reading Emotionally Healthy Spirituality by Peter Scazzero and he is describing the season that (I feel) my wife and I have been going through. It’s something I’ve heard of, but not known much about, and it’s called “the dark night of the soul”. He describes that there are times when we must go through pain and challenge, especially that which comes from a prolonged season of purposelessness and not hearing from God. In the end, the dark night of the soul is a refining period. But it’s really hard to see that in the midst of the pain, grief and loss.
He referred to Gerald Sittser from the book A Grace Disquised, reflecting on the loss of his mother, wife and young daughter in a horrific car accident like this:
The quickest way to reach the sun and the light of day is not to run west chasing after it, but to head east into the darkness until you finally reach the sunrise.
The idea that it is healthier (I daresay not easier) to confront our troubles, challenges, pain and loss head-on is unnatural, but this quote gives me hope and the fact that I’m not the only one to have experienced this season of the dark night, is oddly comforting.
Travel onward into darkness, my fellow pilgrim, and may the light of dawn meet you soon enough.