Poem

From Darkness to Light

Michael Beck Michael Beck

My home is my castle, where deep in the dark
I’ve hidden my treasures, I’ve buried my heart
Far from all eyes that can see the real me
Safely apart so I can be free
Free from restraint that shackles me tight
Free to be ME from morning till night

I’ll fight to preserve my right to be free
I’ll fight to ensure my dark privacy
My secrets are mine, I have nothing to share
Of my life in the darkness where I have no care
I’ve buried myself in a world free from pain
I’ve found in my castle a world I can gain

I need go no further than beyond these four walls
I want no intrusions, I’ll answer no calls
Leave me alone, I’ve found what I want
I’ve made me a world, I’ve set up my haunt
Should I be bothered with a world I can’t face?
When I have in my castle a world in its place

The years have gone by I remember the days
When I lived in the air, when I felt the sun’s rays
As a boy I had thought I’d have somewhere to go
I had dreamed of a life in a castle also
But not of the sort that I now find I’m in
Is this that fine castle or is this a dungeon?

How has my life been so quickly far spent
In a life of all shadows, with so little substance
I‘ve chosen my bed, now in it I lay
I bemoan my sad state, I regret the sad day
That my mother did hear that a boy had been born
That my pitiful life saw the first hopeful dawn

What have I done with the gift I’ve been given?
What have I made of the life I’ve been living?
How have I ended up such a fine mess?
Where did my path veer from more to the less?
Oh the pain to admit I have wasted this life
Is it better to just be and forget all the strife?

Should I bury my hurt; and forget all the pain?
Go back to my dungeon and enjoy all my shame?
The night will soon come, the pain will be eased
The world will be mine, my soul will be teased
The image of solace will fill all my heart
My mind will be numbed, my grief will depart

But a Night is upon me of this I am sure
And I know in this state that my heart is not pure
Should I throw off this thought with the same type of ease?
Should I die as I’ve lived, should I do as I please?
The shadows do lengthen, ought I fear what’s ahead?
I can hope for the best, or find out when I’m dead

But some say to delay is to wake up too late
Could they be right, is it wise that I wait?
I wonder what step is the first in a turn
From wrong to the right, I have so much to learn
I’m old and I’m hard, my ways seem so fixed
So late in the game can a dog learn new tricks?

My life is far spent, I’ve not much left to give
What use could I be, in the little I’ll live?
But what of my soul that goes on if it’s true
Eternity’s long, no finish in view
I must make a choice, but is that what it takes
Can heaven be mine or perhaps I mistake?

Isn’t there something about a front gate?
I’ve heard it is Peter who knows what’s your fate
How does he decide who he’ll let through the door?
The answer to this I wish I knew more
What do you do if you end up like me?
At the last minute without the right key

It’s not all that simple I fear and I dread
When you’ve lived in the dark, there’s a lot to be said
A lot that you’ve hidden, a lot that you’ve locked
Away in your castle, amid all you’ve stocked
The shame of the years that you’re glad no one knew
Will the grave keep your secrets, or will all come to view?

The shame of my life I can now hardly bear
Must it be discovered if not here over there?
I know I would bow in the utmost of shame
I know I’d be worthy of the greatest of blame
But these are the words that I dread more than all
“Depart from me sinner, you have wasted your call”

What could I say at that moment of fright?
What could I say when I know He is right?
To turn at that point is too little too late
My sin’s been discovered, I’ve too long delayed
It’s now I must turn, it’s now I must say,
“These are my sins, Lord you’ve seen all my way”

But if I should say even right at this time,
“God grant me mercy, I repent on a dime”
How do I know He will grant my request?
Can I be sure that my sins did not test
His patience beyond the farthest degree
Where there’s not a hope left for a fellow like me

And then it did dawn like the brightest new morn
The knowledge of this: that a Savior was born!
He came and He died to save sinners like me
He shed His own blood that I should be free
Free from the shame and the guilt of the years
Free to live life without all my fears

How foolish was I to think that I could
Hide deep in my dungeon and do what I would
The night cannot cover me from His clear sight
Even the darkness to Him becomes light
He sees me and knows me both inside and out
My secrets I’ve hidden one day He will shout

Today is a day I can turn to the light
And come out of hiding and depart the night
That’s ruled in my soul and not let me go
That’s lied and deceived me and I did not know
That life was much better without my sweet sin
That tasted so good but then did me in

And now that I’ve taken the Savior as mine
And turned with a vengeance from the sin that did bind
I have found a new freedom to walk in the light
And live my last days in doing what’s right
A new day is dawning, so bright and so fair
The dungeon is empty, hope fills the fresh air

I have something to live for other than me
Dear Jesus who died to set my heart free!
The call I feared lost is now burning bright
The heaven I hoped for is now in my sight
A new home awaits me, high up in the air
The castle I dreamed of, the one He’s prepared.


Michael Beck is a pastor in New York City and the main author on Signpost. Receive a daily devotional he publishes every morning via email.