There's little as deceptive as darkness. A couple of weeks ago, I was driving through a small town in California called Three Rivers. This little place is the gateway to Sequoia National Park. It was an hour before sunrise and still dark as I made my way into Sequoia.
Beyond the limited reach of my headlights, nothing. A vacuum of light, of color, of existence.
But as my car weaved back and forth with the constant curves of the road, I knew something about what was out there, in the blackness, I wish I would remember more often about my life when I can't see, when I'm unsure:
I was surrounded by mountains. By beauty. By so much I couldn't see.
It was simply too dark to make out at the moment. It would have been easy to lull myself into believing there was nothing interesting or worthwhile beyond the gray concrete of the road and the brown dust that bordered it. I could have fooled myself into thinking there was only what I could see.
Darkness does that to us. It tempts us to believe our reality is what we see in our darkest moments--a gaping, black mouth constantly ahead of us, ready to swallow us up.
But if we just keep driving, if we just keep pressing on for a bit...
...we can start to see.
Color begins to crawl across the sky.
Contours begin to take shape.
And with just a faint glow of the sunrise, our hopes and dreams and our vision materialize once again.
When we're driving into the unknown, surrounded by shadow, blinded by obscurity, what if we found the strength and the patience to keep going a little farther--to press on toward daybreak, to let the light illuminate what the darkness intended to hide from us?
We might discover that what's waiting for us on the other side of night was worth the journey and all of its wondering and uncertainty.