Clinging to Hope in This Dark World

I open Twitter and begin to scroll. The words “Breaking News” catch my eye, and I abruptly stop the moving newsfeed on my screen. A shooting. A terrorist attack. An updated death count. My heart sinks, and I tell my husband the news in disbelief. I hate this routine. I can’t comprehend the evil that’s spewing out of hearts and trampling the innocent . . . and I’ve never experienced such gripping fear. I’ve wept hot tears as my heart screamed, “Jesus, You need to come rescue us now.” I don’t know what to do with the fear overtaking my heart—the fear that makes a strong case for staying inside with the doors locked, the fear that makes me terrified to travel in airports or to walk through downtown city streets. The evil in this world looks powerful. It seems like it’s winning. Destruction, death, pain. My weak soul can’t handle it. Do you feel afraid, too? Has your heart been burdened by the wickedness and darkness in the world? Do you wonder what the future will look like? I don’t have the political answers or the strategies we’re desperately clamoring for. But I do know of the hope we can cling to, like holding fast to a life raft in the middle of a stormy, windy, choppy sea.

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it (John 1:1–5, emphasis added).

The Light shines. The Light overcomes the darkness. The Light wins. This isn’t a trite tweet that we post to help us cope with sadness over a recent tragedy. This truth, this victory cry, shouts out the unshakable hope of Jesus Christ, our Light. The Light will overcome the darkness. The Light will win.

The Light overcomes the darkness. The Light wins.

Sadness and brokenness are so familiar to us these days. They’re real, and with each tragedy or act of terrorism, the wound bleeds more. The darkness is so dark. But fear needn’t take hold. It can’t. Because while the enemy is prowling, trying cover this world in darkness, the children of the King of kings—you and me—have the Light within us. I see the darkness and fear and pain in this world, and I imagine a glorious, shining Light breaking through, crushing the darkness forever. A thrill of joy rushes my heart, and peace quiets my soul. Hope is coming.

Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people,and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away” (Rev. 21:1–4, emphasis added).

What can you and I do while we wait for Jesus to make all things new? Let’s pray—really pray. Our world needs so much more than a quick prayer after tragedy strikes. Our world needs groaning, wrestling prayers with cries to God for mercy, for intervention, for grace and help. Pray when the darkness makes you feel afraid. Pray for protection. Pray that His light would burst through the darkness, bringing lost souls into His saving arms. Pray that He would defeat wickedness. Pray that our own hearts would be revived and that we would be so captivated by the gospel that our lives shine brilliantly with His light.

The eyes of the Lord are toward the righteous and his ears toward their cry (Ps. 34:15).

Let’s ground ourselves in truth.

Our world needs groaning, wrestling prayers with cries to God for mercy, for intervention, for grace and help.

If we aren’t clinging to God’s promises, we will be worried and sick with fear of the future. But when we turn to His Word, we discover that we have a sure hope—not only an “everything will be okay” hope but a “God is victorious!” hope. The Light shines. The Light wins. May these verses ground our hearts in truth, remind us of God’s perspective, and provide a victory cry.

The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord ​​​​​​​ is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid? When evildoers assail me to eat up my flesh, my adversaries and foes, it is they who stumble and fall. Though an army encamp against me, my heart shall not fear; though war arise against me, yet I will be confident (Ps. 27:1–3). Then I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse! The one sitting on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he judges and makes war. His eyes are like a flame of fire, and on his head are many diadems, and he has a name written that no one knows but himself. . . . From his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations, and he will rule them with a rod of iron. He will tread the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God the Almighty. On his robe and on his thigh he has a name written, King of kings and Lord of lords (Rev. 19:11–12, 15–16).

The lost and dark world needs Christians who boldly share the life-changing message of the gospel, who continually hope in the God of heaven and earth.

We serve a King who’s coming again.

We serve a King who’s coming again. Hold onto that hope, and courageously shine His light into the darkness. This song by Keith and Kristyn Getty has been a sweet treasure as it has counseled my heart over these few weeks. I hope it encourages your heart as well.

Consider the stars in the sky; When it is darkest they shine out the brightest Consider the stars in the sky In every anguish, Oh, child take courage Do not be afraid Do not be afraid He who made all of this, and who holds all of this, Holds you in his hands

About the Author

Samantha Keller

Samantha Keller loves lazy lake days, strong coffee, and writing about the ways Jesus transforms our everyday messes into beautiful stories. She digs the four seasons in northern Indiana, is probably wearing a Notre Dame crew neck.