[the divine blackout]

[the divine blackout]

Jesus spoke to the people once more and said, “I am the light of the world. If you follow me, you won’t have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life.”

John 8:12, NLT

I sat at the Tenebrae service (thanks, David, for sharing the term with me) at Church, looking at the 12 candles. Right behind the candles was the cross. The light from the candles was dancing in circles upon the surface of the cross.

As my mom and my pastor read the passages from Scriptures, there was a pause every so often, a bell chime would be heard and then one by one the candles were extinguished. Just before reading the passage about the crucifixion, we heard the sound of the hammer striking a nail… three times of three strikes.

Finally… only one candle was left. My pastor took the last candle out of the candleholder and shielding the nervous flame from the air, walked out of the sanctuary.

The people quietly started shuffling toward the door and I sat and looked at the black shape of the cross on the white wall that was barely visible because of the darkness around.

The One who said “I am the light of the world” was extinguished by the airlessness of the sin. The One who said in the very beginning of everything “Let there be light!”

No wonder the “darkness fell across the whole land.”

  • Thanks for sharing this Zee. No familiar with this at all but I can imagine it was a moving emotional experience.

  • I have sat through a similar service. I cannot begin to describe the emotions that were running through me…

    Thank you for sharing and reminding me of this experience!

  • This year, after our Friday Tenebrae, we began the early easter service with people entering the sanctuary singing. The last ones in were the 9 to be baptized in the service. In the center of the group of 9 was a young woman walking with the newly lit Christ candle held high above her head. She placed it back in it's rightful place. Whoa, what a moment.

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