Recently I wrote of the dark days of feeling awful for month after month with no hope of a clear diagnosis and no possibility of treatment. Then I received a diagnosis: Fibromyalgia.
Though this is an often misunderstood disorder and is a rest-of-my-life sort of thing, it makes an enormous difference simply having a name to call it. I now have encouraging and supportive doctors, resources to educate and inform, and hope of treatment that could possibly make it more bearable.
When there was no hope of any good news, it was a dark place.
Part of the emotional pain was lack of understanding or comprehension by the people who should have been able to help. The judgment of others who didn’t understand what I was experiencing made it worse.
Spiritually, this is analogous to where we are before we place our faith in Christ. There’s no cure for our brokenness, and we don’t even know what’s wrong with us. The people who should be able to help often have no idea what we’re going through.
They point. They judge. No matter what we do, nothing works.
Month after month, year after year, we struggle against dark barriers, feeling alone and forgotten. The condition is terminal.
This is why Christ was born into this world of darkness. “Sacrifices and offerings you did not desire,” he said to the Father, “but a body you prepared for me. Behold, I have come to do your will” (Hebrews 10:5b, 7b).
Thus, God became a man: Christ with us. He brought the hope of Good News.
We are terminal, and he knows it. To free us, he came to be broken, so he could die for our sins – the clearest way to show God’s love. This is the best news ever! God passionately loves us and intimately understands our brokenness. He has experienced it and has mercy and compassion for our weakness.
Nothing dark tempers this good news or renders it “too good to be true.” Jesus came to apply the medicine of himself to our terminal condition.
When we believe and trust him, our sins are forgotten and wiped out. Christ’s blood paid for them all, freeing us from our disease of sin, taking all our brokenness, enabling us to live like him, and giving us the promise of eternal life, beginning right now.
His arms are open. He wants us to come to him, believe, and be healed.
In this Christmas season, embrace this hope of good news in the darkness.
Christ is with us.