As we move into the early days of Spring, the idea of light has been on my mind as days get longer with more sunlight. This may have served as the impetus for the short two week sermon series on spreading the light of God I am in the midst of.
Light is a theme throughout scripture, beginning with God saying, “Let there be light,” in the Book of Genesis. As God is light, we learn in John’s Gospel that Jesus too is light and that no darkness can overcome such light. The idea of darkness being incapable of overcoming light is not only empowering, but encouraging, uplifting, and guiding.
There is so much light around us including kindness, honesty, gentleness, apologizing, forgiving, politeness, listening, self-less acts, empathy, peace, music, friendship, marriage, partnerships, children, integrity, humility, honor, community, and so much more. Of course there are countless opposing examples of darkness that seek our energy, attention, and reactivity.
As God is light and as God is love, it is imperative for us to remember that in the midst of darkness that surrounds us, to keep in mind that God’s light, God’s love, shall always prevail. We, who are filled with God’s spirit and therefore light and love, can choose daily to shine God’s light and spread God’s love, or we can make the decision, as some do, to feed the losing entity of darkness.
Whether in our homes, at the workplace, at the grocery store, in the voting booth, out with friends, encountering strangers, and so much more, we can be empowered light and love spreaders, or peddlers of darkness. Should we choose the former, as some do, we will find ourselves infused with energy and anything but helpless to confront darkness. To do so, we need to stay connected with and grounded in God.
Several decades ago, Kathleen Thomerson wrote a simple yet compelling hymn titled, “I Want to Walk as a Child of the Light.” Here are some excerpts. “I want to walk as a child of the light. I want to follow Jesus. In Him there is no darkness at all. The night and the day are both alike.” Embedded with the lyrics are these three lines. “I want to follow Jesus. I want to look at Jesus. I want to be with Jesus.” I invite you to say these three lines out loud, perhaps even several times.
As we move toward Good Friday and Easter in the coming weeks, I encourage us all to ponder these three lines and more importantly use them as a mantra to help us each day make the choice to be light bearers and love spreaders. Light. Darkness. The choice is ours to make.