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Treadmills in the Dark

May 18, 2011

For whatever reason, my garage’s light switch is in the kitchen. One night, while I was in the garage, running on our treadmill, someone accidentally flipped off the lights. For a few scary moments, I found myself in complete darkness, running fast, but going absolutely nowhere.

My experience is a metaphor, I think, for how many people live their lives today: they run around like crazy, but their lives have no real purpose or direction. Kind of like running on a treadmill, in the dark.

Jesus, in today’s gospel, said that he didn’t want people to “remain in darkness.” That’s why “he came into the world as light.” By believing in Jesus, we know what life is about, and we know the direction in which our lives should go, because Jesus lights the way. With Jesus, our lives have purpose, peace, and hope.

Living in darkness can be frightening. My children sometimes admit that they’re a little afraid of the dark, and I completely understand. They prefer to sleep with a light on. Jesus invites us to do the same thing: to keep the light on- his light- to scatter the fear that darkness brings.

As Pope Benedict assures us: “(Christ’s) light will dispel all darkness from your lives, and fill you with love and peace.”[1]

Readings for today’s Mass:

Photo credit: SashaW via Creative Commons

[1] Ubi et Orbi message, 12/25/07

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  1. Mary Hamm says:

    great analogy — running in the dark — i.e. in circles. I know so many people that would not miss one day of exercise, but never think of spending time to receive the creator of the universe into their hearts and being fed by him. and to think– we can do this everyday! The Mass — where heaven and earth meet — not the horizon!!!

  2. Taylor Hughes says:

    It is good to rest with purpose in the Light. 🙂

  3. Cynthia BC says:

    Several years ago I was at an elementary school for a civic association meeting.

    There arrived at the school a mis-directed Coach Dude (who to my amusement resembled the parochial vicar we had at the time), whose meeting was at a nearby middle school.

    Me: Your meeting is over at the middle school
    Coach Dude: Do you know the address?
    Me: Not the number, but it’s on (street name)
    Coach Dude: *blink*
    Me: All you have to do is go back out to (street just outside elementary school)
    Coach Dude: *wail* I got HERE via my GPS. I really have no idea where I am. I need the ADDRESS.
    Me: *sigh* I’ll write the directions down for you.