The Dark is Rising

“You will be frightened, often, but never fear them. The powers of the Dark can do many things, but they cannot destroy. They cannot kill those of the Light.”

I have read four of the five books in The Dark is Rising sequence, which, for some reason, I’ve never read before, and I have enjoyed them. (I guess I’m kind of on a children’s lit kick this January, because I’m currently reading The Princess and the Goblin by George MacDonald, another children’s book I never read.) In the earlier books, the emphasis was on the fact that the Dark has no real power over those of the Light, which put me in mind of John 1 and 1 John 1 (heh – it looks funny to write them like that).

In the fourth book, The Grey King (a Newbery winner), there are a few passages that talked about how, in the battle of good and evil, the Light doesn’t really concern itself with sacrificing a human here or there in the overall battle, because it’s for the greater good. It’s very Star Trek – the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few or the one. And I realized, while I was reading it, that I used to think of God that way, that he had plans and that he didn’t care who he hurt while he was accomplishing them. I wouldn’t necessarily have said that, though I might have skirted around the edges of it. Whether I would have said it or not, I certainly lived like it was true, as if I was nothing more than a pawn in the hands of the Almighty.

But I have come to believe that I was wrong, that there is, of course, pain in this life, and we do see casualties for the greater good, but that God shares and understands our grief about those things. He isn’t far up somewhere analyzing everything impartially – he came and experienced life with us and our pain is personal to him, too.

Thinking about those things made me so thankful, both that God is so close and that I have come to understand him a little better. It’s a good way, I think, to start off a new year.

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