and so we wait.

The sun has surrendered to the black of night and I find myself overcome by darkness again. It’s been awhile since a night like this has visited my bedside. 

My teeth are clinched and I can feel every muscle tense. Again, the weight of the world is masquerading as the weight of my sheets. I repeat, out loud, rules that I have set in the past, a way of keeping boundaries for myself. Tonight, I see them only as lines begging to be crossed and dares taunting with challenge. 

I can’t escape my own thoughts and I want to physically beat the lies out of my head. I want to turn my head to the side and pound and pound until the lies come dripping out my ear. Pipe dream, huh? 

The lies remain. And as much as I’d like to believe that I can “take every thought captive,” I’m just not buying it tonight. It’s a romantic thought, though. But right now it feels more like a simple self help tactic. “Just change your thinking, Alison.” That’s what I tell myself…”Just reason yourself out of this spiral, you idiot.” 

It doesn’t work like that. 
Self help rarely does. 

I don’t even have words to pray. I don’t have words enough to ask for the help I think I need. Rarely do prayers, real ones, look like the ones we were taught in Sunday School. Felt boards and finger puppets are of no use to me when the light is sucked into the crack under my door and only dark remains. 

And so we wait. 

We wait in darkness for morning. We sit and stare at the black horizon and anticipate the rising of the sun. The night cannot last forever. Morning after morning, for thousands of years, has shown up at precisely the right moment. It has come raging over mountaintops and swimming on the sea. It has come piercing through every tree in every canopy of every jungle in the world. 

And so we wait. 

We long for the moment to throw off our sheets, shedding the unnecessary weight of the world that is crushing down on us. We wait to swing our feet over sides of beds that haven’t seen sleep in far too long. And we wait for sleep. We anxiously await the day when our muscles are finished cramping and our teeth unclench. There is a physical ache that reminds us – none of this is as it should be.

And so we wait. 

We wait for truth to reign and we wait for righteousness to be the air we breathe. Our minds long for the day they are no longer torn between hope and despair. The constant pull to each is exhausting and suffocating. It’s no wonder many of us want out. But we don’t leave. We simply wait. Help will come bearing truth as a sword and will slay every lie that has held us captive. 

And so we wait. 

We sit in the floor and let others pray on our behalf. We resign ourselves to the fact that most often our prayers lack a beginning and an end. The prayers we find to muster are filled with a few more swears than we’d like to admit. And they frequently play themselves out in the raging of our fists toward the sky.

But still we wait. 

The waiting seems awfully heavy this advent season. And to be honest with you, I don’t know how much more waiting I have left in me. But one thing I do know, or at least I am reminding myself of, is this – darkness dissipates at the first ray of light. With one glimmer of the promise of light, darkness ceases to be. 

Light has come. 
Light will come again. 
And the darkness has not overcome it. 


2 thoughts on “and so we wait.

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