by Lee Hull Moses
I watched the movie A Wrinkle in Time recently. It’s an adaptation, of course, of Madeline L’Engle’s classic book of the same name. It’s a gorgeous film, full of incredible imagery that complements the powerful story of love conquering evil. There are great themes of darkness and light throughout the film, as Meg Murray and her crew journey to the ends of the universe to rescue her father from the evil It.
One of Meg’s companions is the wonderful Mrs. Who, who only speaks in quotes from other people. At one point, when the darkness seems to be at its most severe and Meg is in pain, Mrs. Who quotes the Persian poet Rumi: “The wound is the place where the light enters you.” Leonard Cohen says something similar in his song “Anthem”: “There is a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in.”
I always get introspective about light and dark at this time of year, when the days are getting shorter and I’m counting down to the solstice when the light will linger longer again. I’m more aware of the light in this season, more grateful for the sun on my face on a cold day.
It’s true, though, that darkness is not always a bad thing. As much as a love the light, I also like the deep darkness of early morning, the potential of a new day waiting there. Barbara Brown Taylor says as much in her book Learning to Walk in the Dark: “I have learned things in the dark that I could never have learned in the light, things that have saved my life over and over again, so that there is really only one logical conclusion. I need darkness as much as I need light.”
We need the darkness of Advent, too, as much as we need the light of Christmas and Epiphany. We need to linger here for awhile, to slow down and ponder what we might learn in these dark Advent days. We need to wonder at the mystery of the waiting, and discover what just might save our lives.
Blessings to you in this season.