His eyes didn’t really want to open. They felt sore and dry. He forced his eyelids to part but snapped them shut again. Bright daylight was leaking into the room. The window was mostly covered. Thick curtains stopped a majority of the brilliance from what he hoped was still the morning sun. Regardless, the light seeped out from under the drapes and was sufficient enough to cause pain. He pulled the blanket over his head to block it out.

His movement was enough to wake her up. He listened as the strange woman yawned, stretched and rolled over. Was she facing him? He waited for her to try to pull the covers off his face. He dreaded it. He didn’t even know this person’s name. They’d met at the bar the previous night and things had clearly gone well enough that she was waking up next to him. He hated himself.

He waited, hoping that she’d leave- then again, he was the dude. Women didn’t necessarily do that kind of thing. She probably wanted breakfast and conversation. He held still and listened to her breathing for what felt like an eternity before she rolled out of bed and pulled the shades open.

Even under the blanket, the light hurt his eyes. The brilliance of the sun made his head pound, so he contracted his eyelids even more and waited. In the light, he’d see her face. This woman would be able to capture his features, too. If she saw him at the supermarket, she would recognize him. If he happened upon her anywhere else, he knew he’d remember her, even though he could hardly recall the hours preceding this moment. He remained hidden under his blanket, hoping the light wouldn’t blind or expose him.

He yearned for the darkness that could conceal the truth of his situation. He maintained anonymity in the obscurity of a poorly lit hotel room. The light ruined all of that and still hurt his eyes as well as his head, but the luminescence of day would last for a long time. He couldn’t just stay there and wait for it to leave. Besides, checkout was at eleven this morning. He wanted to vomit, especially when she crawled back into the bed, next to him. He continued to wait. He faked his unconsciousness but wished it was real.

What came into existence was Life,
and the Life was Light to live by.
The Life-Light blazed out of the darkness;
the darkness couldn’t put it out.

John 1:4,5

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We celebrate the light this time of year. We rejoice in a Brilliance that exposes us. The luminescence that is Jesus Christ spotlights our sin and faults and initially, may hurt our eyes, but that radiance happens to be the best thing we’ll ever encounter. Our eyes can adjust and the truth remains with or without any exposure, it’s just that once it’s been highlighted, responsibility of one sort or another follows.

May this Christmas season find you walking in the light of Jesus Christ, loving truth. If you’re not there, it’s alright- maybe think about it. Your eyes can adjust and it won’t hurt after a while.