The light shining in darkness, Part 1
By shining with God’s light before the world, Mother Teresa has indirectly pointed out the darkness that is its opposite; she has helped us to name the darkness , to unmask the great lie.
Each time she spoke in public, after making the Sign of the Cross over her lips, Mother Teresa would repeat this line from St. John’s gospel: “For God so loved the world …” (Jn 3:16). She would remind her audience that each of us is precious to God, chosen out of countless others who could have existed in our place. She would go on to say that each of us is cherished, prized as “the apple of his eye” (Dt 32:10), and that as long as we have breath, this love will never leave us. This was the light she held up before the world, reflected in her words and works. This is the truth that frees us to get up when we fall, to hope in a love we cannot earn, and to become what we were made to be.
While those who heard Mother Teresa speak might have forgotten or ignored this truth, or even doubted it, Satan knows it all too well, “and trembles” before its implications (cf. Jas 2:19). God’s faithful love, his undying thirst for us, represents the undoing of Satan’s kingdom. It buckles the very foundations and shakes the underpinnings of Satan’s empire. Since Satan cannot bring God to stop loving us though he tries, accusing us “day and night before our God” (Rev 12:10) he resorts to the next best thing. Since this “enemy of our human nature” 126 cannot change the heart of God, he does all in his power to change the heart of man the focus of his strategy since the Garden. Because he cannot stop God from loving, he tries to stop man from believing. In the end, the result is the same. As far as we are concerned, by our unbelief in his love, it becomes as if God did not love us and either way, we are equally lost.
Using every twist of logic, every un-redressed injustice unearthed from our past, every broken dream and unhealed wound in a pantheon of hurt, Satan gnaws away at our belief in God’s love and care. While there is a “blessed night,” a sacred darkness that hides a light too bright to behold, there is also an unholy night, a darkness that is the absence of all light and worse, the opposite of all light, a kind of demonic anti-light. If all true light is the breath of the Holy Spirit, there is, on the other hand, a toxic darkness that is the breath of the evil one. His one desire is to nullify the light and power of God’s love, to distance us from that love, to neutralize its impact on our conscious lives. He knows that the less we are aware of God’s love, the less we are in touch with it, the more likely it is that we will forget or doubt it and all the easier it will be to entice us to sin, to live instead for ego.
- Fr. Joseph Langford, MC
Mother Teresa’s SECRET FIRE The Encounter that Changed Her Life, and How It Can Transform Your Own