So when you hear the title "The Tunnel of Darkness", what do you think about? I commonly think about going in an underground tunnel. This tunnel could be very winding to seem there is no end. This tunnel may not be lit up very well or even at all. Thankfully with modern day technology we have electricity and lights which light up the world, but what happens when the power fails?
In life we go through many tunnels of hardships. Some may seem there is no end, others may just come and go frequently. Some may hardly ever see severe hardship. I have picked just a few hardships that we suffer day to day:
1) Finances- To me the world seems like the items there in are getting more and more expensive but pay is staying close to the same. It causes trouble in families, relationships and even personal life
2) Relationship problems within couples/families- Pornography, Laziness, Selfishness, Adultery, Finances and Jealousy are all common problems in relationships. Tearing couples/families apart
3) Employment- Truthfully how many people today are unemployed. I have been unemployed for 6 weeks and it sucks. Thankfully I am single and not providing for a family. Jobs take spouses away from each other, fathers/mothers away from their children, moving from place to place for work
These are common problems in today's society. There are more than this, but I hit just a few points. Each of these can totally cripple a relationship with another or self.
Lets looks at the tunnel of hardships todays younger generation goes through:
1) Peer Pressure- "Its cool, everyone does it" is said over and over to these young souls. Are we teaching them to run from inappropriate peer pressure, which I personally think covers it all
2) Abuse- So many kids today are abused physically and emotionally. They are bullied physically and mentally which changes their life, not for the best usually though, these kids become suicidal and reckless
3) Broken Families- Kids grow up without a parent who may have been able to guide them a little different that the other, different experiences change attitudes, single mothers working all the time to provide for her kids
4) Lazy Parents- Parents teach their kids to live on welfare and not to work. What economic problems does that create?
5) Early Sexual Experimenting/Rape- How many teen girls do you know who drop out of high school because they are pregnant? How many lives are taken by abortion because the mother or father are still in high school? Girls are taken advantage of. Obviously there are certain situations for abortion but that will be discussed later.
6) Drugs and Alcohol- Lives are destroyed by these things
I hate discussing such content but its the truth of what we go through today. I was in high school just a few years ago and I saw all that went on. Thankfully my parents raised me to always run for safety. Was I an angel? Absolutely not, but if I would have listened to my parents earlier in my life it would have been easier.
Now that we have discussed these horrible and sometimes endless seeming obstacles in life, how can we over come them? Every person is different and different things work for different people. Some parents think locking their children in the house will do. I can honestly say if anything it normally makes them way more experimental in their lives away from home. I personally believe it all starts from the time the kids are born. How do we raise our kids? Are they given everything they want? Are they taken care of and treated with respect or are they just a tax write off? You may be wondering how this ties in with tunnels of darkness but you will see.
Their futures depend on the training, love and discipline they are given during their first 18 years. Roughly at about age 14 they are experimenting behind their parents back. It may be serious or just minor but no matter what how we respond will change their outlook the next time. If we respond in hatred, you may never see your kid again as they will run away. If you respond with the greatest love you can give, it will make them think the next time or maybe even years down the road.
So in the time that they are being raised, hardship will come to both parents and children and will effect both. Children will see how their parents respond. If the parents just give up that is what the kids are being taught. If they are taught to persevere throughout whatever comes their way they will be stronger when life gets harder.
Example; My mom was diagnosed with cancer when I was about 12 years old. My mom did not show much weakness to us kids. She seemed pretty upbeat about it. As we have gotten older and know more about it we can just imagine how hard it was for her to keep smiling, to press onward as if life was normal knowing it was definitely not. That took me years to actually understand how great of an example it was. I ran into different medical things in my life and my mom was continually giving support. It probably effected her more than me at the time but she didn't show it. I had a harsh attitude and wanted to give up. By her example though was I brought through that tunnel.
Her example was that of the Savior. She continually tried to emulate His example towards us. Obviously yes we made her mad and she showed it on occasion, but for the most part she was so patient and loving when we made mistakes. We were able to learn from her testimony and strength when we didn't have our own understanding.
This is one of my favorite disney songs. It is called, "Go The Distance" from the movie Hercules. Hopefully you know the story of Hercules. He grew up a boy who was bullied and pushed around but with determination and incredible effort he became a hero to many. Its the same in our life. We may be having problems but with determination and effort our problems will be worked out and we will come to the end of the tunnel. The path may not be easy, but it will most definitely be worth it.
I challenge you to look(not dwell) at your problems, see what needs fixing, come up with a plan and then take that plan to God for help. As it states in Matthew 19:26 in the Bible,
"... , but with God all things are possible." Let Him help you fight your hardship. Let Him lead you to the light at the end of the tunnel. Let Him be the cornerstone and rock upon which your life is built. "He will help you avoid wells without water!"
May you always keep the eternal view is my prayer that you may not get distracted for the here and now moment.