I've always loved the phrase and accompanying image of standing in the gap. Let me walk you through what I picture when I hear that phrase:
There's complete and utter darkness about to engulf a lone person. This person is completely bowed down, unable to lift their head; everything about them bespeaks weariness. They aren't alone though. There's someone standing over them. This person has his arms spread, forcibly keeping the darkness at bay, as if by the sheer power of his will. Everything about him is strong and determined. With his arms spread wide, he takes every blow delivered. He doesn't flinched or cry out. He simply stands his ground, taking the hits while the weary person rests. He shields and protects them.
So yeah. In that simple phrase, I found a fascination and power that I can only very poorly describe. Actually, this image brings tears to my eyes every time. It's so incredibly beautiful.
My clients have been through Hell; their lives are often living nightmares. Some of them have been almost beaten to death. Some have been completely abandoned, and left to barely survive on their own. And those are practically standard cases. Despite all of that, there are people fighting for them. These people exist to make horrendous visions disappear. They exist to bring light, peace, joy, healing, and strength back into life. I have come to an even deeper appreciation of God because I've seen this process. Why did my clients have to experience Hell? I don't know. What I do know is that God hasn't abandoned them; He's placed people in their lives that can make life livable and beautiful again. I've been able to witness, first hand, this incredible advocacy. There is help. There is a way out. There is a chance for healing and growth. Nothing is impossible.
Love can bring about incredible changes. Loving someone involves a certain amount of vulnerability. It means being willing to reach out, even when there's a chance of getting hurt. Love isn't easy, but it kind of is. To love is to sacrifice, but it doesn't always feel like one. Yes, life is hard. Yes, bad things happen, things that no one should ever have to experience. It's not hopeless though. There are people who can and will help. They will never stop fighting, because they have truth and justice on their side. Yes, it's an exhausting fight, but seeing someone set free makes it totally worth it!
Don't be afraid to fight on the front lines, because you'll never fight alone. Jesus Christ is there, with the angels and the saints. The darkness cannot overcome Him. Fight on! Stand strong! We will have the victory.