May the blessing of Light be on you, light without and light within… – Irish blessing
Today is the winter solstice, the darkest day of the year. In many ways this day is a pause, a time to look toward lighter days, to begin anew, to put those things which weigh us down behind. It can be a passage from darkness toward light.
This year has flown by, and has been filled with joy in many ways, and yet it has been difficult, as well. Sometimes, I’m quick to wonder about the hard days. Why do we have them? But without the difficulties and darkness, the light and our growth would not seem as bright. Without the challenges, we aren’t stretched and pulled out of our comfort zones so that we can grow and become stronger. When we grow stronger, we also shine more brightly.
2017 has taken our world to places we couldn’t have previously imagined. The road has been winding, involving politics and natural disasters and diagnoses, but also has held the beauty of births and friendships and travels and the blessing of the grind of busy days. The normal days with dinnertimes and work commutes can wear us down, but it is in those busy times when a moment of truth will catch my breath. The normal days are gifts, too.
In January, I decided my 2017 word for the year would be Love. Before and after and during all of life, the most important element is love. Probably the hardest thing to do in life, especially when things are difficult, is to love.
Tonight, I take inventory of the past year. What do I want to continue? What do I need to stop? Where am I heading? And where do I want to go with my life? The days we are given are fleeting. At times like this I remember how important it is to live fully, every moment. These dark days of December are precious, perfect for reflection, for remembering what is most important, and for calibrating where we want to go in the new year.
Light, Life, Love
The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. John 1:5
We are each gifted in a unique and important way. It is our privilege and our adventure to discover our own special light. – Evelyn Dunbar
People are like stained-glass windows. They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in their true beauty is revealed only if there is light from within. – Elisabeth Kübler-Ross
Love is not consolation. It is light. – Friedrich Nietzsche
Faith is the bird that feels the light and sings when the dawn is still dark. – Rabindranath Tagore