The Story Behind the Poem
The seed for “While it was Still Dark” was planted several years ago when I heard an Easter sermon on the resurrection passage in John 20:
Now on the first day of the week Mary Magdalene came to the tomb early, while it was still dark, and saw that the stone had been taken away from the tomb.
The speaker, Chris Yue, drew my attention to the phrase, “while it was still dark”. Two thoughts stayed with me from that sermon—first, that the resurrection happened while it was still dark. The greatest miracle of all history had happened, and no one knew about it yet. As far as anyone knew, nothing had changed … but everything had changed. I found that to be such an encouraging thought, that even though it may look like things are hopeless, that nothing has changed, it may be possible that God has already done amazing things and we just don’t know about them yet.
The second thought that stayed with me was the faithfulness of Mary Magdalene. Even though it was still dark, even though she had no reason to hope or even dream of what was coming, she still went to the tomb. She didn’t know that a miracle had happened, she was just doing her part to be faithful to the Teacher that she loved. And for us today, that is all that is asked of us—that we continue to be faithful, even when we don’t see the miracles or know what God is doing. We can be faithful, even when it is still dark.