Several years ago, I served in a big church with a green room and practice rooms and access to the stage through a tunnel and up the stairs.
I enjoyed every minute working on the production team, assisting the singers, getting the pastors all mic’ed up. I loved it.
Except for the time the lights went out.
And I mean O.U.T. Not a glimmer. Anywhere. Back in the day when there were no cell phones with fancy flashlight apps. It was the pitchest black I’ve ever experienced.
Thank goodness, we were all friends. We stuck together, knocked on every door we could feel, making sure no one was left behind as we crept down the hall. We formed a human chain of trust, slowly making our way to the sunshine as we finally reached the door.
It didn’t last long. I was in no real danger. But good golly, Miss Molly – I won’t ever forget those eight or nine l=o=n=g minutes of blindness.
Light is miraculous, not at all like dark. When it’s dark, we exist in absence. There is no such thing as “the source of darkness”. We don’t purchase “flashdarks”. We don’t turn on the dark – or forget to turn it off.
Darkness is creepy, sinister. It harbors evil and the scary unknown. No matter what kind of Star Wars geek you are, when we say, “Gone over to the Dark Side,” everyone knows it’s not good.
Even the Scrooge-iest of penny-pinchers eventually needs a light – even if only the 15-watt motion-sensored night-light variety.
We need light.
Our bodies need vitamin D from sunshine. Our eyes need a good lamp to read and enough brightness to dodge those midnight Lego landmines.
Light provides what plants need to grow and what birthday cakes need to hear secret wishes. Light welcomes guests at our front door and gives comfort when waking from a nightmare.
It arouses us and defines the day. And when someone at long last believes the truth, we are relieved that they finally see the Light.
The New Testament sacred story-tellers refer to Jesus as the “Light” more than twenty times. Like…
- Jesus called Himself the Light of the World – and, if we follow Him, we will have the light of life.
- Simeon said Jesus was a “light of revelation to the Gentiles.”
- John said, while you have the Light, believe in the Light, so that you may become sons of Light.
- He also called Jesus the one true Light.
In Jesus, there is no darkness. No misunderstanding, no absence of truth. He welcomes us and comforts us. He gives us life.
And in this lovely season of light and music, I am taken by the lyrics of Robbie Robertson, from the song Christmas Must be Tonight…
How a little baby boy bring the people so much joy.
Son of a Carpenter,
Mary carried the light
This must be Christmas, must be tonight.
Mary carried the light.
Oh, my lovelies – are we carrying the light? Are we bringing joy? Are we feeling Christmas?
I sure hope so. I hope that you are living day by day, filled with the beautiful spirit of Christmas – shining with wild abandon all over everybody you meet. And, just in case you are a feeling a little dim, please accept this blessing of
And, remember when we were stranded in the darkness and didn’t leave anyone behind? Still true, right here and now.
I don’t want to leave any of you behind, in the darkness. In the scary unknown. Let me introduce you to the Light of the World, the permanent source of life. Jesus. And if you already know Him, let’s get to know Him better – together.
And carry the Light – together.