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The Light Of The World

I took an unintentional hiatus from writing my column for a while.

Life got a little hectic due to many things, including the pandemic we’ve all been living through, so I apologize for not writing sooner. I hope this finds you all safe and sound, dear readers.

Over the past few months, we have endured a lot, haven’t we? The realization that something smaller that the eye can see can devastate countries, communities and individuals like nothing else. A new, socially distant reality that leaves us feeling lonely and closed off. The uncertainty of this lurking virus that has killed so many and left so many critically ill in its wake. The tragic loss of George Floyd’s life that brought the value of life and the fight against racism to the forefront of America’s consciousness as well as the world’s.

The events that have occurred over these past few months have often left me deep in thought. “What is this all for?” I wondered. When I was feeling isolated and alone, it was easy to drift into a negative line of thinking. Everything seems so bleak right now — what good things can we cling to right now? Where is the light at the end of this tunnel?

Darkness is so easy to drift into, isn’t it? It starts out as an underwhelming gray fog and then gradually increases until your stuck in the middle of a pitch black place you have no way of getting out of. Or, at least, that is how it can feel.

I didn’t live through the Great Depression and the World War II era, but I have a feeling it felt a lot like this. There was a great looming darkness spreading across the earth — of hatred, uncertainty, scarcity and fear. Make no mistake — hatred and anger is as much of a disease as COVID-19. It can exist without anyone seeing it, without anyone knowing it is there — until a hotspot occurs, in which it is hard to contain and even harder to get rid of.

Yet, even in that great darkness, there was hope. In secret corners of the world, groups gathered and fought against the darkness, saving people when they could, helping their neighbors and rallying together, nation partnered with nation, to stop its spread. People, believing in the cause, rationed food, gathered their resources to support the effort and eventually were victorious.

No effort was too small, no act of kindness too little.

We have a similar opportunity today, my friends. A great many challenges have presented themselves today. Are we facing a physical enemy with which to battle? No. However we are facing a virus, economic complications, social issues and we have the issues of mental health on the horizon. In this time, we can either latch onto feelings of hopelessness and despair, grasping onto the overwhelming darkness; or, like those so many years before us, we can choose to hope. We can choose the light.

My favorite passage in John describes this light, the bright beacon of hope that is Jesus Christ. I won’t quote the full passage here — but if you have a moment, read through the full passage John 1:1-18. It is so significant and beautiful. But, the description of the light is our focus for today — “In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.”– John 1:4-5

The light does indeed shine through the darkness today, dear readers. Darkness cannot and will not overcome the light that is Jesus Christ. And that light, that so freely came into the world, is available today and lives within us. Faith can be difficult in the face of so many difficult things, but that does not make it any less necessary.

In these times of trials, let us look for that light — the light of Christ — to be our way maker. Let us follow in his footsteps, loving God and one another, so that we can spread that light to others. Lord knows the world needs it so much right now. May the Lord bless you and keep you, may the Lord make his face to shine upon you and give you peace, in the Name of the Lord — thanks be to God.

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