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He makes known secrets that are deep and hidden; he knows what is hidden in darkness, and light is all around him. Daniel 2:22 (NCV)

I love to camp. There is just something about the great outdoors and falling asleep to the soft noises of the night…most of the time. Several years ago I was camping alone in a favorite, nearby state park. At that time I had a small two man tent, just big enough to be cozy and warm in. The site next to me was occupied by a couple of young men. I watched them occasionally from my campfire as I read. In a word, they were strange.

They arrived shortly after I did on Friday night and set up camp. From the start it was obvious they didn’t camp much as they didn’t look prepared to camp at all. Shortly after their arrival they put up pieces of paper on the trees in their sight and then walked away. My curiosity overwhelmed me so I went to check on the paper. They were just a bunch of weird designs. Nothing made sense about these two the rest of the evening.

That night I was awakened by a strange noise. It sounded like someone fighting. No yelling, but the sound of punch after punch finding its mark. Then…silence. A few moments later I heard something that sounded like a body being drug through the woods. Had there been a murder? Was I fully awake or partially dreaming? I didn’t know. I knew one thing though. I was scared!

The sound came closer to my little tent and I froze. I didn’t dare look outside, and didn’t know if I was in danger or not! Then a new sound. The sound of a nearby tree cracking and slowly falling to the ground. I braced for impact. Then, nothing. Complete silence. As you can probably imagine, I didn’t sleep much the rest of the night.

The next morning my friends next door left. I noticed a small tree had fallen on the other side of my campsite, several yards from my tent. To this day I have no idea what I heard or what went on that night. As I thought through things the next morning I ascertained that most likely the thumping sounds were made by a passing bear and the tree could have fallen victim to that bear or just fallen from natural causes.

Physical darkness can be fearful for us, but physical darkness is nothing like the fear we in broad daylight. Those times when we wonder what is going on in secret before our eyes. Evil surrounds us. We question the motives of friends and foe, family members or co-workers.

Making it through the times of emotional or spiritual darkness involves trust and trust, on the human plane is risky at best. We trust our lover and then find we’ve been cheated on. We trust our employers until we hear our jobs are on the line. We trust our children until the police car pulls into the driveway.

Daniel was faced with a challenge. His life depended on the answer he would give. I don’t think Daniel was worried. He didn’t trust the King. He didn’t trust the men surrounding him. But he did trust his God.

You may be going through a period of time in your life when you are confused or scared by what you see around you. You may be nursing the wounds of being cheated on, lied about or deceived. You may have lost faith in all mankind and even started questioning God. During times of fear and confusion trust is the hardest thing to grasp ahold of and the most important thing to cling to.

We may not always know what is going on in the ‘darkness’ of our lives. We can know beyond a shadow of a doubt that our loving, gracious and merciful Father knows. We may have to endure a few times when we don’t understand what is going on around us. But he is a God of light. He doesn’t give light. He IS light. In his perfect time all things will be exposed. You can trust him to see you through the darkness.

PRAYER: Father God, I know these words are true, but it doesn’t make it much easier right now to be honest. I’m scared. I’m worried. I’m hurt. Everyone I’ve trusted has failed me, but I ask that you would empower me to trust you in the darkness. Amen.

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