“Sunset is the point that the sun disappears over the horizon. Twilight is the period between sunset and dusk. During twilight there is still light in the sky. Dusk is the point when the sun is at 18 degrees below the horizon and there is no longer any sunlight in the sky.” It’s said that twilight lasts some 20-30 minutes.
You can still see somewhat during twilight….but you better hurry because it’s going to be completely dark in a half hour.
It seems that spiritually we’ve been making our way from the approach of sunset with the sun still shinning to twilight which still has some light….but in a short time the light will be gone and it will be dark. Wow, that sounds somewhat distressing.
There are the extremes of “light and dark, right and wrong, hot and cold” …and there are the transition areas of “lukewarm, confusion, uncertainty, twilight”…… I think often we can prefer the “transition” area because we think we don’t have to make a decision…we can choose both sides…..”I’m okay, You’re okay…. I’m keeping my options open, I choose the middle ground”. Well, the middle ground seems to be shrinking.
I’m often struck by how the Chief Priests were finally pushed out of the shadows into the bright light and had to choose… they shouted to Pilate, ” we have no king but Caesar”. (John 19:15) Wow, these religious men who had given their whole lives to God now chose Caesar. A noted national “Catholic politician” recently said “ they (pro-life voters) are willing to sell the whole democracy down the river for that one issue…. it gives me great grief as a Catholic.” Wow, how would you like to have that as part of your resume at judgement.
People are being forced out of the “shadows” into the light, or the dark. Everyone is being forced to take a position… to open their mouth and choose. When we compromise a little here and there, it weakens us and makes us less able to stand our ground when the pressure increases. As the twilight moves to dusk, will I stand with Christ? As the pressure to compromise increases, will I stand with the Lord? When the twilight ended on Holy Thursday evening and the darkness arrived, even Peter was not able to stand for Christ. These questions make me uncomfortable.
Well, let’s take a deep breath and calm down. Like Peter, we have Jesus who is going to help us… he will help us stand and help us up if we fall. He stood with Peter even in his sin….“But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.” (Luke 22:32) We have one another to help us in our times of need…to encourage us and to pray for us and to help us when we fail. We have the advocate, the Holy Spirit, who will give us strength. Jesus tells us to be not afraid…he will not leave us.
So, while the twilight is ending, it’s a good time for those who know Christ. Jesus is the light and he will help us choose the light…and “all will be well with our soul”.