The light we need

The difference is unbelievable in how I feel today under sunny blue skies versus yesterday (and the day before) under gloomy, gray clouds and drizzle. On those days, I could not write inspirationally, I had zero energy, felt blue, and piddled around the office and house not accomplishing much.

Humans need light – that’s all there is to that. It is scientifically proven sunlight lifts our moods, and a good explanation as to why people generally feel happier and more energized in the summer.

Is there anything more alluring than the dazzle, luster, blaze, brilliance and illumination of sunlight? Summer means playing outdoors, walking the beach, attending festivals, bike riding, reading poolside, taking the kids to the playground, touring sites, and a plethora of other activities we can plan. Simply being in nature in warm and bright weather automatically can boost our spirits.

As the warm season ends, it’s a mind-game from this point, as September transforms into fall. We realize the next two seasons mean severe weather changes and the “dreaded winter” approaching. We know to expect shorter days, cold, snow and ice, and less light.

If the difference between a sunny and a gloomy day can affect us so profoundly, how about the diversity between living in the light of the Holy Spirit – and not? That higher elevation of joy that lifts us and affects our daily actions, gratitude level, and general disposition.

As we incorporate light into our lives in assorted ways: light a candle, turn on a lamp, use a flashlight, ignite a fireplace, or read by a book light clipped to our novel … we can incorporate faith into our lives, too: kind actions, serving others, worshipping at Mass, wearing faith icons such as a crucifix or a saint’s medal, or situating a Blessed Mother statue in our gardens.

The greatest light in life is the light of our faith, illuminating our hearts and our souls. The difference and perspective of living with God present in our lives – and not – can be unbelievable.

Is there anything more dazzling? It is the light we need.

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Suzanna Molino Singleton

Suzanna Molino Singleton

Suzanna Molino Singleton is a native Baltimorean and parishioner of St. Leo Church in Little Italy. A former staff correspondent for the Catholic Review, she launched her "Snippets of Faith" blog for the Catholic Review in June 2018. Suzanna is the creator of a weekly e-column, SNIPPETS Inspiration (since 2006), and the author of seven books, including Baltimore’s Little Italy: Heritage and History of The Neighborhood. Email Suzanna at