3 gifts on a winter’s solstice

cabin in snow

Dear friends,

One of the dearest, wise-persons of our present time is Brother David Stendl-Rast, a Benedictine monk. Brother David, now 92, has devoted his life working for peace, engaging in interfaith dialogue, and speaking and writing on the powerful impact of gratitude. His website, gratefulness.org, is a rich spiritual resource.  Please check it out.

Today on his website, Brother David shared a brief letter on light and darkness. I thought it was so beautifully-written, I wanted to share it with you, on the eve of winter solstice.

Light in Darkness: A Letter from Br. David

The poet David Whyte is a close friend of Brother David. He too writes powerfully about darkness and light.

photography of night sky

Photo by Juan on Pexels.com

Sweet Darkness

When your eyes are tired

the world is tired also.


When your vision has gone

no part of the world can find you.


Time to go into the dark

where the night has eyes

to recognize its own.


There you can be sure

you are not beyond love.


The dark will be your womb



The night will give you a horizon

further than you can see.


You must learn one thing.

The world was made to be free in.


Give up all the other worlds

except the one to which you belong.


Sometimes it takes darkness and the sweet

confinement of your aloneness

to learn


anything or anyone

that does not bring you alive

is too small for you.

(David Whyte, “The House of Belonging”)

And as a final gift for this week, I would like to share a video that Linda Witmer and I played at an Advent Day a few years ago featuring the song, “Come Darkness, Come Light” by Mary Chapin Carpenter. It seems a perfect accompaniment to Brother David’s letter.

May we journey together – through the dark – toward the Light of Christ. Alleluia!

2 thoughts on “3 gifts on a winter’s solstice

  1. linhankgraham

    Thank you for this poem and beautiful video that filled me with such peace, joy and hope. The final photo just makes me want to jump up, raise my arms and shout for thankfulness of what Christ did for me. Alleluia! May we all experience Him in a new way this Christmas.

  2. slhpmh

    Just discovered this song/album the other day on Spotify –Come Darkness, Come Light. I’ve been enjoying listening to Christmas music these few weeks: the familiar and new ones.


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