In grade-school science, you probably learned that a shadow is caused by the absence of light when an opaque (not see-through) object has absorbed the light. And that shadows fall opposite their light source.
That’s why your shadow is in front of you if the sun is behind you and vice versa. The way you’re facing determines whether or not you can see your shadow.
I know this is a simple scientific fact, but it is a profound spiritual truth for facing tough times: You have to keep facing the light in order not to so easily see life’s troubling shadows.
Are you old enough to remember in 1998 when the Galaxy IV communications satellite malfunctioned and rotated out of position, turning away from the earth? In an instant millions of pagers went silent, TV and radio stations couldn’t transmit, and even some gas pumps couldn’t accept credit cards. It all happened because just one satellite in the heavens turned the wrong way and couldn’t communicate with earth.
Perhaps your circumstances have gotten you out of position spiritually. You can’t figure out how a loving God would allow this situation in your life or your loved one’s. Maybe you even feel at times as if your prayers have not been heard. I hope you will check to see which way you are facing so you truly can communicate with the Lord–pouring out your heart to the One who hears, who understands, and who has the power to respond.
Once you’re facing the right direction, you also can choose to live under a different shadow. Now I know it sounds strange that you could find light by being under a shadow, but it’s true.
The shadow I want you to move under—or stay under if you’re already there—is a much, much bigger shadow than the pall cast by any of life’s struggles. It’s a safe, secure, protective shadow. There’s no other shadow that can eclipse this one. And underneath it, we’re not in the dark; we’re supernaturally in the light.
Those who live in the shelter of the Most High
will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty. Psalm 91:1
The shadow of the Almighty.
I love that word picture. Can you see yourself with a dark cloud of pain–physical, emotional, mental or spiritual–over your head, moving under the huge shadow of God Himself? Standing underneath His shadow, you can barely even see the little shadow-speck of the difficulties you’re facing.
He has hidden me in the shadow of his hand. Isaiah 49:2
Have you ever put your arms around a child during a storm and drawn them close to you as protection from the rain and the noise? Have you ever seen a mother hen spread her wings and gather her little chicks to safety as danger approached? Those are images the Bible gives of God’s love and care for us.
How precious is your unfailing love, O God!
All humanity finds shelter
in the shadow of your wings. Psalm 36:7
May I pray for you today? Almighty God, please help my friend to live not under the shadow of a pandemic, or an illness or of any of life’s tough circumstances, but instead under Your protective shadow. And there, let my friend feel your unfailing love and find rest. Amen.
Excerpted from Finding the Light in Cancer’s Shadow ©2006 by Lynn Eib. All rights reserved.
Make sure to open this blog in your browser to hear the music video, “Savior’s Shadow” by Blake Shelton.