“I was used to looking for red flags and signs of danger in people, especially men. Anger issues, insecurity, deceit, pride. Men with these character flaws always hurt me.
Rather than sensing danger, I sensed peace. He seemed to carry a light within him that made me feel safe and secure, while also exposing the darkness in me.
What was different about him? What did he have that no one else did?”Set Free: How a Jiu Jitsu World Champion Found Jesus
One of the first things I learned after I got saved was “Hurt people hurt people.” Those who have suffered wounds have the greatest potential of inflicting wounds on others.
It was a way for me to put into perspective all the damage that was done to me. The people who hurt me were suffering wounds themselves. My survival instincts combined with my natural tendency to want to be alone (writing is a solo sport) led me to hide out in a cave, a.k.a. my house.
If I wasn’t around people, they couldn’t hurt me. I was in bondage to a fear that anyone and everyone would be a new source of pain.
Even though God led me to a Kingdom Center with some of the safest people on earth, I was still constantly on guard for sources of danger and pain. Going back to “hurt people hurt people,” I was the person likely causing the most damage.
Defensiveness, paranoia, fear. These were pillars of my false personality.
But as I walked through discipleship, that stuff started to break off. Over time, through interactions with safe, loving people, I started to develop trust again. I started to be renewed and restored from the trauma.
But there was still little motivation to leave the cave. Even though some of my wounds were being healed, there was still fear that people would hurt me afresh.
This last week, I found myself asking, “What if something bad happens? What if someone hurts me? What if this situation is filled with darkness?”
What if. What if. What if.
I was having this conversation with Holy Spirit, and He responded, “What if something good happens? What if someone helps you? What if YOU are the light?”
I had been agonizing over imaginary scenarios, plotting out all the potential negative outcomes, and I hadn’t once considered that I could imagine positive outcomes instead. I had been so locked up in fear, it was a new revelation that I could carry light into darkness to shift an atmosphere.
As I’ve battled my own enemies at home alone, I carried with me the scripture that “the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” John 1:5
I’d used it only in the context of the battleground of the mind. But as I look back to my first meeting with my spiritual father which was this day two years ago, he carried a light into the darkness. The hopeless are drawn to light like a moth to a flame.
Matthew 5:14-16 says:
“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”
As children of God, we need not fear the darkness. We can be the light!