Looking back at last week, remember that hormonally, shorter days and longer nights mess with your melatonin and serotonin levels. This can cause SAD (seasonal affective disorder) which brings on symptoms including depression, overeating, oversleeping, and a desire to isolate yourself from others.
When faced with symptoms like these in a world that goes dark before you leave work, motivation to connect with God can also fade off. A connection with God takes effort. If you find yourself drifting away from talking to God, listening to Him, and interacting in His word, you’re going to find yourself sinking further into a dark hole.
When you’re feeling hopeless, you’re going to need a power outside of yourself to lift you back up. If you feel gross after overeating due to boredom and depression, you’re going to need a Higher Power to remind you of your value. When you feel purposeless because you spent a week going to bed early, waking up late, and working through the daylight hours, you’re going to need someone to reveal that you do have purpose.
God is your light, always. You’re going to need Him every single day during this Season of Rest. He is the one that is going to give you exactly what you need right when you need it. All you’ll have to do is ask. Darkness is a forceful presence that demands a seeking for God’s light. Do your soul a favor and seek God during the coming short days. This time can either be empty darkness or vibrant light filling the deep void of night.
Psalm 119:105 is a well-known verse and describes perfectly what a connection with God can do for you in the midst of darkness. It reads,
“Your word is a lamp to my feet
And a light to my path.”
King David was dedicated to God and to God’s word. He meditated on it and returned to God when trouble arose. When David consulted with God for direction, God was faithful to provide it. The same is true for you.
Stick close to God and His word. Pursue His guidance and His truth. The light of His character will bring you hope, joy, and relief through the winter.
Questions for Group Discussion or Personal Reflection:
- Thinking on past winter seasons, share stories of how you felt during those times. Did the long, dark season have an affect on you?
- What are some ways you have made the short days better in the past?
- How are you doing when it comes to connecting with God on a regular basis? Are there things you would like to change?
- Read Psalm 119:105-112
- How does the word of God affect David?
- What are the implications for anyone else who places their focus on scripture?
- How can you strategize to have a healthy relationship with God for the upcoming winter months?