I relish a long afternoon alone–with my husband and daughter out of the house and the sun saturating the room with that special end-of-the-day kind of light, where the shadows are long and the minutes tick away leisurely as I enjoy a cup of tea, a book, or sometimes… nothing… doing just nothing.
These long, alone afternoons must be fraught with silence. I crave silence like my daughter craves noise or morning glories light.
My camera is still in the shop and while leafing through my old photos today, I came across the above picture. An overwhelming warm memory washed over me as I recalled the afternoon I took this.
We were in Cyprus just a few months ago, and everyone was out but me. The silence and sun nourished my soul while I laid on the sofa with a book. I was glancing around the room when suddenly the sharp shadow on the wall captivated me… more than the sunshine bouncing off the wall. There seemed to be beauty emanating from its delineation.
And it became so apparent to me that it is in the contrast of shadow that light is understood. It was simple yet profound.
Death is one of the biggest shadows on earth; and passing through that darkness, it is possible to understand life better. The shadow of death defines the glow of life and gives it weight and substance. If you have ever lost anyone dear, then you know what I mean.
This revelation is coming a little late for me, but I comfort myself with this glorious truth from the book of Hebrews: “Every good and perfect gift comes from the Father of Lights above with whom there is no shadow of turning… ‘ My heavenly Father is full of light and does not cast a shadow of change… He is unchanging!
Imagine a world full of light with no shadow? A place where the Lamb of God is our light and there is no need of sun… A place where there is no sin… and therefore no shadow…
John Lennon asked us to imagine a place where there is no religion or dividing walls–that would be heaven, and the culture of the sixties became enthralled with the idea. But in reality, heaven will be all about adoring the Lamb who was crucified and risen again… That spotless Lamb then becomes the sole definition of light that sustains and nourishes… and no need for shadow to define that shining beauty anymore….