Shadows and Light

Last week my husband received a call from a long time friend.  It was someone he grew up with, graduated from high school with, went off to serve in the military with and someone who was a groomsman in our wedding.   

He hadn’t spoken to him in over a year.  While they talked, I left for a 3 mile walk.

When I returned, they were still talking.  

His friend was weary.  Very weary.  He could only see the shadows in life.  

Somewhere in the conversation the topic turned to Heaven and to the release and relief that Heaven will bring us from this world that seems to have gone mad.  

But one thing his friend said to my husband really got to him.  His friend’s words went something like this:  “I just hope that I can be good enough to get into Heaven.”

Bob assured him that it isn’t his goodness that will gain his entry into internal life with God, but what God did for him.  Bob pointed him in the direction of Christ and told him he’d email him some verses from the Bible. 

In that email Bob shared some verses from the book of Romans that is rich with the message of salvation.

His friend saw light break through his shadows and thanked my husband for his help and told him it made sense to him now.  They will talk again soon.  

All my conversations with people lately have had that same common reality.  Weariness.

The state of the world weighs heavy on them.  Then add their own personal hardships and life can seem unbearable.    

One morning recently I woke up at dawn and looked out my kitchen window.  I could see tall beech trees casting shadows but what caught my attention, more than the shadows, was the sun rising behind them.  In between the dark tree trunks, I saw light poking through.  There will always be light if we look through the shadows of life.  

I think of the lines from Leonard Cohen’s song “Anthem”

There is a crack, a crack in everything

That’s how the light gets in

I threw open my window and allowed the breeze to catch my curtain, breathing in with the breeze to begin again and exhaling all that gets in the way of my peace.  

I wrote the following poem as I thought about all the weary travelers: 

Oh weary traveler it is so hard

Not to see what’s wrong

In a world sick with imperfection

It’s easy to lose your song

You see the shadows

But you can’t see the light

Searching for goodness

It seems so far from sight

Peace is in this moment

Not in some other place

Breathe in and exhale out

Find what’s good in this space

A calm heart becomes reality

As the past and future you release

And the gifts you see before you

With each inhale will increase

Light and shadows always mingle

The world is full of both

You can’t have only light

If you want to see real growth

Look for the cracks in the shadows

That’s how God’s light gets in

Divine gifts you’ll receive daily

And peace will flourish from within



27 thoughts on “Shadows and Light

    1. It truly was wonderful for my husband to have that conversation with our friend. Sometimes God opens a door of opportunity like that and it really is a blessing. I’m happy you liked my poem. Thank you for your comment, Mary.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Love how God used Bob, as He has many times over the years. Bob is so good at sharing Christ’s love with others. And your poem is so beautiful, Nancy, so very true. Thank you for sharing your gift. Love you two💞

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, Bob is good at sharing Christ’s love with others. He’s experienced grace upon grace and loves to share the hope and light with others. Thank you , Bonnie. 💕

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you for your inspirational poem! It is so hard nowadays to be positive and to see the good! But, I do see God’s hand at work. He is raising up the people we need to defeat the darkness. God bless!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree, Dawn. For us, because of my husband’s illness and compromised immunity, we aren’t as free as most people yet. We still have to take so many precautions to keep him safe. With that and everything else going on in the world, it can be hard to stay positive. But I do see God at work too. On Easter Sunday, we had 120 young people get baptized at our church … proof that God is at work. God bless you too!

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Nancy, what a blessing that your husband was able to dispel some of the darkness in his friend’s life! As you say in your beautiful poem, “Light and shadows always mingle.” We live in times when the shadows grow deeper and wider, weighing heavily on many of us.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, it was certainly a blessing for both of them. Thank you for reading my post and taking the time to comment, Rosaliene. I truly appreciate it.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. A timely poem Nancy! Thank you for sharing it. Only in the shadows can we see the Light. The testimony of your husband shining Light on his friend’s shadows is beautiful. It reminded me of the chorus in the Josh Turner song called “I Saw the Light.” It goes “I saw the light, I saw the light/ No more darkness, no more night/ now I’m so happy no sorrow in sight/ Praise the Lord, I saw the light.”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It was a blessing for both my husband and his friend. It was a divine appointment. I love the words to that chorus, Beth. Thank you so much.


  5. I love this Nancy! Beautiful poetry also. Isn’t it amazing that even in our own brokenness and pain – God gives us opportunities to be His hands extended? Love that thought – ‘the cracks allow the light in’.


  6. Coming through the shadows always makes us grateful for the light. Thanks, Nancy, for the encouraging report about your husband’s friend and for the beautiful poem. It reminded me of a song by one of my favorite bands, NeedToBreathe, that starts, “Be the light in the crack … ” and ends with “Be more heart and less attack.” It’s one of those songs that invites me to relax and rest in Jesus when I’m weary. Today I needed something like that, and here was your post. 🙂 ❤


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