The People That Walk in Darkness – 2 Nephi 19:2-4

2 The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light; they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined.
3 Thou hast multiplied the nation, and increased the joy—they joy before thee according to the joy in harvest, and as men rejoice when they divide the spoil.
4 For thou hast broken the yoke of his burden, and the staff of his shoulder, the rod of his oppressor.
(2 Nephi 19:2-4, Isaiah 9:2-4)

When we go through difficult trials in our lives, it’s easy to feel abandoned. In the passage above, Isaiah describes a group of people who had been oppressed and who “walked in darkness.” His promise is that their burdens would be lifted, that the darkness in their lives would be replaced by light, and that they would be filled with joy. In subsequent verses, he explains that these burdens are lifted because of the coming of the promised Messiah (2 Nephi 19:6-7). (See also Matthew 4:12-16.)

President Dieter F. Uchtdorf provided these words of comfort:

There may be some among you who feel darkness encroaching upon you. You may feel burdened by worry, fear, or doubt. To you and to all of us, I repeat a wonderful and certain truth: God’s light is real. It is available to all! It gives life to all things. It has the power to soften the sting of the deepest wound. It can be a healing balm for the loneliness and sickness of our souls. In the furrows of despair, it can plant the seeds of a brighter hope. It can enlighten the deepest valleys of sorrow. It can illuminate the path before us and lead us through the darkest night into the promise of a new dawn (“The Hope of God’s Light“, General Conference, April 2013).

President Uchtdorf suggested three things we can do to open our eyes and find God’s light:

  1. Start where you are. Don’t assume that God’s light will only be available when you are better or when your circumstances have changed. Recognize that it is available now.
  2. Turn your heart toward the Lord. Pray to Him in humility and gratitude, asking that you might experience His light.
  3. Walk in the light. Follow the teachings of the gospel, which will invite God’s power into your life.

Today, I will remember that God’s light is available to all His children. When I encounter difficult trials which may cause me to feel that I “walk in darkness,” I will remember that God’s light is available. Because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ, I can overcome the challenges I face, and my life can be filled with light and joy.

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