Prayer Request: Darkness

I consider myself to be pretty street smart and there’s not a whole lot that surprises me. However working with all men in the tech field..sometimes they are privy to some internet happenings that I wouldn’t be and I hear information I’d rather not know.

***Don’t continue reading if you don’t want to be disturbed. I mainly present this knowledge because I’m looking for prayer on this situation as a whole. ***

Anyway. It was brought to my attention that there is some sort of gross underworld on the internet that I was just made aware of today called DarkWeb which is a part of the DeepWeb. Basically it’s content that isn’t searchable and therefore people can do all sorts of illegal or disturbing things on there without it being noticed or punished. Content is ranging from illegally acquiring drugs to the more stomach turning situations of videos or streaming content where people can commit cruel often torturous acts to women and animals. It can even be live feeds where people watching can tell you what to do to said person or animal.

I’m not going into more detail than that. Honestly, I’m currently still weak stomached over it and just reading titles of some of these things literally drove me to a mini panic attack today at work. I’m very sensitive to things like that and can’t even watch violent or scary movies.

Honestly, it’s pretty scary to think this exists on the internet and in the world. There are so many horrible things happening in the world as it is and I don’t post this to ruin anyone’s day or peace. But I do feel very strongly that this is something to keep mindful and prayerful of. Currently I am feeling comforted that our God has overcome the things of the world but I also feel pretty grossed out today.

Scripture I prayed today. Please join me.

John 1:1-5 (MSG)

The Life-Light

1-2 The Word was first,
the Word present to God,
    God present to the Word.
The Word was God,
    in readiness for God from day one.

3-5 Everything was created through him;
    nothing—not one thing!—
    came into being without him.
What came into existence was Life,
    and the Life was Light to live by.
The Life-Light blazed out of the darkness;
    the darkness couldn’t put it out.

John 16:33  (MSG)

31-33 Jesus answered them, “Do you finally believe? In fact, you’re about to make a run for it—saving your own skins and abandoning me. But I’m not abandoned. The Father is with me. I’ve told you all this so that trusting me, you will be unshakable and assured, deeply at peace. In this godless world you will continue to experience difficulties. But take heart! I’ve conquered the world.”

Psalm 10 (MSG)

14 But you know all about it—
    the contempt, the abuse.
I dare to believe that the luckless
    will get lucky someday in you.
You won’t let them down:
    orphans won’t be orphans forever.

15-16 Break the wicked right arms,
    break all the evil left arms.
Search and destroy
    every sign of crime.
God’s grace and order wins;
    godlessness loses.

17-18 The victim’s faint pulse picks up;
    the hearts of the hopeless pump red blood
    as you put your ear to their lips.
Orphans get parents,
    the homeless get homes.
The reign of terror is over,
    the rule of the gang lords is ended.

Found in the shadow | United in the light

“We have found each other in the shadow and we have been united in the light”

[Source: http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-32735289]

Someone shared this video on Facebook today and it blew me away. Two women, each with a skill, each with a weakness, working together to finish a product. I was already captured by the video and then out of nowhere, this beautiful quote: “We have found each other in the shadow and we have been united in the light”.

I’m in awe.

For me this feels like the Christian journey, my Christian journey, and yours. Sometimes you find yourself in shadows. You find out who you are in the darkness. You find out who Christ is in the darkness. You can identify others who are lost in the darkness. And it is God’s hope that we as His people are united in the light, and that us personally one-on-one God are united with Him in the light.

I’m writing to you as I normally would. No preparation, just inspired in the moment, no drafts, no edits, no filters. I want to write a tangent now, just to see what God might want to reveal to me and you. Free form. So here it goes:

God you are good. You are faithful. There are times where we become lost in our own darkness or there are times where the darkness around us becomes too heavy. We become deceived in the darkness because we forget that we have access to your light. You are the light of the world and you have illuminated us all with your Holy Spirit. God I am grateful that you found me in the shadow. We have found each other in the shadow. I am covered in the shadow of your wings. I need never fear the darkness or the shadow because you are always with me. You never leave me or forsake me. You are my God. Though there are seasons where we fall victim to the darkness help us to remember that we have been united in the light of your love and grace. One day when we come into glory with the Father you will banish darkness. Jesus endured the pain of the Father turning His face away. Jesus became covered by the darkness so that darkness would never be known to us. You gave us Your light. We are united with the Father because of Jesus who found us in the shadow so that forever we will be united in the light.  

Amen.

Be the Light

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I saw someone post this online and it must have been the Holy Spirit but this verse came to mind and I wrote it in the comments:

“Here’s another way to put it: You’re here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. We’re going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. If I make you light-bearers, you don’t think I’m going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I’m putting you on a light stand. Now that I’ve put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you’ll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven.
So what does this mean to me?
1. I’m here on Earth to shine the light—the light being Christ. He is our true north. He is the reason for everything. He is the way, the truth, and the life. He came here to show me the way Home. And because of Him, I’ll never be the same, and if you want to, you will never be the same either.
2. I am special to God. You are special to God. If we are bearers of Jesus’s light, we will be on display. Not because that is something we should aspire to—fame, but because He is famous. He is wonderful. He is miraculous. People will look at us because we are bearers of His light. And it’s hard not to notice light, when so much of the world is shrouded in darkness. Right?
3. I don’t have to be ashamed. I don’t have to feel like I’m not good enough, not pretty enough, not rich enough, not popular enough, not talented enough, etc. God simply calls us to “be the light”. This is a simple thing guys. Just be. Be because of what He already did. Shine because He brought us out of darkness into light. Our entire human composition is different because we are spiritually alive. We are called to be light. To show people the way home. To invite people to find out what God thinks of them. To eliminate fear, guilt, shame, pain, etc.
Thinking upon this verse I got an image of when you’re in a concert and people use their phones in the stadium to light up the arena:
But imagine that in a global way. One of those lights is me. One of those lights is you. Not everyone turned their light on at the same time. I turned mine on so to speak, and maybe that encouraged a total stranger to look for their light. In this life there will be times where you are the only one holding a light. It can be daunting to stand there alone and surrounded by darkness. We all have seasons on loneliness, despair, sadness, grief, loss, and that’s why it’s so important to be around people who will keep your light on. Will speak life into you. Will support you. It’s always important to also keep your own light on through God’s Word and through constant communication with Him. God desires to see the whole Earth find their light, but they need to see mine and yours to know what that looks like.
God I love you. God I’m thankful for you and humbled by you. God I am the light-stand. It doesn’t matter if I am metal, or modern, contemporary, or wooden. All that matters is you are the bulb on top. I exist to support You. I exist to hold You up. To shout your name in the darkness. Help me to live for you. Help me to not look at my own ordinary human life and instead see myself as essential to Your plan for the Earth. Lead people to You through me. In Your beautiful name, Amen.

Photo credit: Unknown – found on Pinterest and source listed as “Facebook”