Ordinary Time


“...new life starts in the dark. Whether it is a seed in the ground, a baby in the womb, or Jesus in the tomb, it starts in the dark.”

Barbara Brown Taylor, Learning to Walk in the Dark, 2014


The memory of my suffering and homelessness is bitterness and poison. I can’t help but remember and am depressed. I call all this to mind—therefore, I will wait.

Lamentations 3:19-21


When I am in the midst of a tough time, I don’t always see God at work. Looking back on those tough times though, I can often see God in hindsight. When I was a senior in high school, my family was having a lot of trouble. God gave me good friends to support me and an outlet in music with my choir teacher and class to express my emotions. I remember praying and begging God for resolution while I waited.

What I couldn’t see until looking back, though, was how God was present in the midst of that tough time. Now I see that God provided the right people at the right time. I also see that one can’t go around pain, or over it, but we have to go through it.

Passages like this in the Bible are comforting to me. Suffering and struggle are normal, and so is struggling with feelings of hopelessness.

If you are in a dark place, who is surrounding you now?

Susan Sytsma Bratt


Loving God, today I wait for you. Today, I lament with those who are suffering and struggling to see your goodness. You promise to walk with us through the valley of the shadow of death. May your world sense that presence today. Amen.


“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”

Martin Luther King, Jr.