What If the Light at the End of the Tunnel Isn’t What You Hoped For?

Have you ever had one of those days when the light at the end of the turned out to be a freight train barreling toward you? I remember my preacher dad asking this question many times. I recently had such an experience.


We had returned from our sudden 4200 mile road trip to attend a family funeral. I was just about caught up on housecleaning, laundry, grocery shopping, and paying bills. I was looking forward to a quiet evening, when my child’s desperate call came in. The next three days exploded with drunkenness, an arrest, a missing person report, an overnight in ER, and hours of pouring Christ-like love into our adult child. Restoration is possible but requires difficult steps on our child’s part, and tough-love on ours.

With children who’ve entered our family after traumatic beginnings, dramatic happenings are frequent. Our kids are now well into adulthood so gratefully these incidents are rare. But I do remember feeling steam-rolled flat night after night when they were all still at home.

What do you do when high-stressed events are piled one on top of the other? How do you think? How do you continue to love? How do you muster the strength each day? Where do you find the true light?

I know only one place.

Your word is a lamp to my feet, And a light to my path (Psalm 119:105, NKJV).


For You will light my lamp; The Lord my God will enlighten my darkness (Psalm 18:28, NKJV).

I remember many a Sunday standing in church with hands raised, face turned heavenward, and voice lifted in worship as God restored my battle-weary soul. I recall reading and praying Psalms that proclaim God’s strength and love and faithfulness. I sought comfort while hiding in the shadow of His wings. I found renewal when resting on my Rock. I bolstered my heart with promises from His Word. And I trusted in the surety of His purposes.

Only One Light promises to show the way. Only One is strong enough to dispel the deepest, darkest night. Only One is the Bright Morning Star.

So when the light at the end of the tunnel turns out to be a freight train, what do you do?


Depend on God’s promises.
Understand you won’t always understand the whys – and don’t really need to.
Commit to trust and obey regardless.
Keep on keeping on.

©Cheri Johnson July 2016


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