Revisit: Shining in the Dark

The following updated post features Alyson Lee, UVA Class of 2020. Her story is an inspiration; it reminds us that God can use all things for our students’ good and His glory—when we pray. (And it’s a reminder that all newly registered Moms, current Moms, or Moms with graduates can ask for emergency prayer to be solicited from our network of over 180 MomsHooPray, no matter how long ago their Hoos graduated.) Alyson went on to graduate with a Masters of Science in Narrative Medicine at Columbia University. In just a few weeks, Aly will don her white coat and begin med school at the University of Pittsburg. Congratulations, Aly! God will continue to use your story. 

Last night many of us waited for the dark to descend so that we would be able to see something beautiful. We corporately celebrated with gratitude our many freedoms. Our country wrestles with real difficulties, yet we still mark what is true and good with sparkling “lights” that shine even brighter in the darkness.

On Sept. 6th, 2018, all moms on our MomsHooPray roster received an emergency email request to pray for UVA Class of 2020, Aly Lee. As a writer for The Cavalier Daily, Aly chronicled the very start of her journey of suffering in “I had a stroke?”

But first, read and celebrate with me the amazing young woman that is reflected below in her follow up email to her interviewer on a podcast called The Same Boat. Thank you, Aly, for shining your light on what is true and good. And thank you, moms, for your faithful prayers!

Hi Roy,

I hope you have been well. I have been reflecting a bit more since our interview and thought I’d share a few of the thoughts our conversation sparked if you don’t mind.

After thinking more about God being a God for not just the spiritual/emotional, but also the physical…. it struck me that this concept is actually quite clearly reflected in the Gospel. Jesus didn’t save us through spiritual/emotional means, he actually physically became flesh and sacrificed his physical body. I don’t think I had ever really meditated on the fact that Jesus not only knows our emotional pain, but he knows our physical pain as well— he knows what it’s like to have sharp objects stuck in your skin (for me it’s the needles for blood test, for him it was the nails that pierced him to the cross). 

This made me think of one of the helpful things one of my mentors said to me. We met one day and he had me read the passage in Romans that talks about suffering producing perseverance, etc. I was reluctant to go through this passage because many people have quoted/paraphrased these verses to me as “encouragement.” It often came across as minimizing the present pain I felt and it often came from people who weren’t currently suffering. This mentor, however, asked me to consider who was saying these verses. And I realized these verses were ultimately coming from God– from Jesus who died on the cross.

Though the people who quote these verses to me may not know a lot about suffering, the God who is ultimately saying them to me certainly does– and not just on an emotional level but a physical level. So when Jesus weeps with me, I know he genuinely weeps. And I can fully trust when he says that this present suffering is nothing compared to the future glory… because he is living proof of that!

Anyway, I just thought I’d share by way of saying thank you. Reflecting on the questions you asked have helped me gain a deeper awe of who our savior is, what kind of love he has for us, and what kind of hope that offers me as I journey through this. 


Aly’s articles – Cavalier Daily

Aly’s interview: Ep 17 Needles and Nails/The Same Boat Podcast

Fireworks Photo by Ray Hennessy on Unsplash


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