Journeying ever more deeply into the will of God, I find doors and rooms and hallways I had not expected. One of these is what I'll call the room of abandoned lights.
What I think of as "my abandoned lights" are various ideas I embraced
over the years, attitudes I once considered enlightening and empowering. In
time, those lights proved to be no light at all.
of these un-lights were initially dazzling. They appealed to my
broadmindedness, that modern version of "sanctity" that basks in its politically
There was no pesky death-to-self in the world of my abandoned lights. The Cross
was not part of the scene. 'There
is a way that seems right to a man, but the end of it leads to death.'
By the grace of God, I cast my unlights aside when I met
the One Who is Light Himself. In time, I even began to
feel that a large part of the task of a "cloistered heart" is to Carry the
Fire into darkness, as well as into areas of "artificial
can make the mistake of trying to make hard truths so palatable," writes Dan Burke at Catholic Spiritual
Direction, "that we end up presenting half-truths or even worse,
untruths (implied or actual).... Yes, we can and must say 'come as you are';
but we must also proclaim that the God of Love who meets us where we are, loves
us too much to leave us there. He calls us to union with Him, where we
will find the Truth that sets us free to know and live an abundant life in
For a look at some of the un-light we can be tempted to follow, check out this
the Carmelites Rescued Me From the New Age, by Anabelle Hazard
"God is light; in Him there is no darkness." (1 John 1:5)
"The revelation of Your words sheds light, giving understanding to the
simple." (Psalm 119:130)