Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Cast me gently into morning

Another long drive home up the highway from Irish dancing lessons together. One of my deep hearted daughters sits beside me as I navigate the darkness in the high winds of the approaching storm. She turns up the volume on her Sarah McLachlan CD and says "Mum, listen to this. It was a special song for me in Uganda last summer. It's not a Christian song but for me it was like God's voice speaking to me, and me speaking back to Him."

Answer

I will be the answer
At the end of the line
I will be there for you
While you take the time
In the burning of uncertainty
I will be your solid ground
I will hold the balance
If you can't look down

If it takes my whole life
I won't break, I won't bend
It will all be worth it
Worth it in the end
Cause I can only tell you what I know
That I need you in my life
And when the stars have all gone out
You'll still be burning so bright

Cast me gently into morning
For the night has been unkind
Take me to a place so holy
That I can wash this from my mind
The memory of choosing not to fight

Cast me gently into morning
For the night has been unkind

Sarah McLachlan

My daughter shares how this song spoke to her in her darkest moment where she felt without hope, despite her relationship with the Lord. The song gave her hope, words to cling to, and helped her come into a morning of new trust in God's direction for her life. She is still on that journey, growing closer to God through the darkness she has known, understanding her own depths more clearly, and in them finding that there is no darkness too dark for Him.

Her experience of course highlights mine. I remember my struggles at her age, and reflect on how I walked away from trusting God for a time when I came into dark places, and chose lesser lights to lead me on, and then through going further into my darkness found His light again. I was so grateful that my daughter had used her pain to lead her deeper into God's love, had had the courage to embrace her darkness and let God be the one to cast her "gently into morning."

I reflect how just that morning I found several notes in a journal I created for my father over 25 years ago. It surfaced in my sorting of my mother's papers. Of course the passages I had copied out especially for him had come from my own treasured notes from years before that.

I had written, "My night allows the light to enter.' I don't know where I quoted it from. I only knew it was true.

Another note was a quotation Dad had been the first to give to me in earlier years, quoting it from the radio speech King George V had given in World War II. It was one of those treasures from my reticent shy father that told me he was a man of deep faith underneath all the reserve.

I said to the man who stood
at the gate of the year -

"Give me a light that I may tread
safely into the unknown."
And he replied
"Go out into the darkness
and put your hand
into the hand of God.
That shall be to you
better than light and
safer than a known way."

M.L. Haskins

My father's voice, my daughter's voice, my voice, the voices of secular singers, other writers, kings...whatever the medium, God speaks. God refreshes lights as He allows more darkness. He layers the metaphors...my daughter shares about inner darkness as we drive on the winding dark road home. A CD player, an old black notebook, handwritten notes from a loving daughter, me, to my father, heartfelt sharing from my loving daughter to me, her mother. So the circle goes, so the journey goes, ever onward, and upward, out of the darkness, through the darkness, gently into morning. Our heavenly Father leads us gently, faithfully, weaving threads like golden braids through the years, through the generations, through songs, poems, sayings, radio broadcasts, through others' words. The timeless and the timely, always together.

5 comments:

Angcat said...

Dear Meg,
The saying that King George V quoted hung on my father's wall in his office for many years, and has been precious to me as well. It is a wonderful reminder of His presence in those dark places.
Thank you for this beautiful blog. The imagery of driving with your daughter in the coming storm was beautiful.

Belinda said...

I too, love the quote about taking the hand of God and going into the darkness. It seems especially appropriate in the uncertain financial climate here in England right now.

I loved the post Meg, and reading of the intervoven scraps of lives, the patchwork quilt of family. Blessings and love!

Marilyn said...

Pure poetry!
This went straight to my heart on an inwardly stormy day. Thanks!

Joyful Fox said...

Meg,

Beautiful that in the darkness, His light penetrates. Interesting that we sometimes need to walk through the dark holding our Father's hand.

Thanks for, as Belinda said, the patchwork of your family quilt as an offering of encouragement.

Meg said...

Lovely and encouraging comments, all of you. It was nice for me to write something in a slightly lighter way than I have, and yet carry a deep message. Family quilt is a nice way to put it.