Last week we took a trip to a tiny fishing town on the coast of Washington. That first night in our borrowed beach house, my husband and I settled the girls into bed and, once they were asleep, reminisced a bit about the trips of our childhood: “Remember how when you’re a kid, you don’t know what any of the weird sounds in a new place are?” We laughed. “You don’t think, Oh, that’s just the refrigerator. That’s probably a branch of the apple tree against the siding.” Every sound is new and alarming. But we’re adults now; we know better.
The next night, we woke to an ominous hissing, popping, percolating sound, so loud it woke us from two rooms away. It came from the laundry room—from a gray tank in the laundry room, which looked very much like it was under pressure and could possibly, probably, at any moment explode. Had we known what the tank was or what the noise meant, we might have been dignified about it. Perfectly calm. But for about fifteen minutes, I drafted exit strategies in my head. How would I get the girls out of the house? Where was the nearest exit? Had we seen a fire station when we drove through town? Did this town even have a fire station?
We prayed for wisdom and, mid-prayer, the tank simmered down. And we went back to bed feeling all the unpleasant nostalgia of being a kid in a world where home appliances are hostile and every twitching shadow might belong to a mutant spider.
So much of our fear seems to spring from what we don’t know, and the night is filled with things we don’t know. In The Bright Light and the Super Scary Darkness, Dan DeWitt (The Friend Who Forgives) acknowledges that fear and explores the way that the Bible talks about light and darkness. “The whole Bible is really one big story about the light and the dark,” the young narrator explains.
Within that context, DeWitt shares the whole story of Scripture—the times when it seemed like the dark was winning, and the times that the light won. The book ends with a fun twist that reminds readers that though the darkness can be scary, it doesn’t have to be: after all, we know the One who is the Light of the World. Whatever darkness we face, whatever uncertainty, he has already vanquished it. And he will never leave us truly alone in the dark.
The Bright Light and the Super Scary Darkness
Dan DeWitt; Rea Zhai (2020)
Disclosure: I did receive a copy of this book for review, but I was not obligated to review this book or compensated for my review in any way. I share this book with you because I love it, not because I was paid to do so.