While on a family reunion this summer I had an interesting experience. We were on a beach in the Pacific Northwest. The beach had a really fun little miniature island sitting about 8 feet out in the water, accessible by wading through shallow sea water and stepping across submerged rocks. The kids were in heaven, spending hours crawling all over it, dragging pieces of driftwood and seaweed to build things, catching crabs, and doing all the other sorts of things you do as a curious child. The first night of our stay, as the sun began to go down, the little island turned to shadow because the sun was setting right behind it. I began squinting, trying to spot my kids in the dimming light, and started to worry because I couldn’t see them. Then a small glimmer of light caught my eye. It took me a few seconds to figure out what I was seeing—it was the outline of one of my daughter’s heads. Despite the little island being seemingly engulfed in shadow, there were slivers of golden sunlight partially outlining my kids as they played. It was beautiful and I quickly snapped a picture with my camera.
That moment has really touched me as I’ve considered it. I have thought about all the times when it seems like shadows and darkness seem to be taking over, that I can’t see my way, and I become scared. That moment on the beach reminded me that no matter how dark it may be, the smallest point of light can cut through the darkness, bringing us hope, joy, peace, direction, or whatever we might need at that moment. Sometimes we just need to remember to look for the light instead of focusing on the darkness.