Friday, December 06, 2019

6. ...and the life was the light of all people.

Yesterday we thought about Jesus bringing life. Now John tells us that the life he gave was like light to people. Light and darkness are very important themes in John’s Gospel, as are seeing and not seeing. Jesus lived in an age when there was very little artificial light. You couldn’t just flick on a switch when it got dark. People depended on the sun and the moon for light, things which were entirely out of their control, supplemented by the rather feeble light of oil lamps if they had them. Light was precious, enabling people to do things they couldn’t do in the darkness. It was God’s first gift in creation – “Let there be light” – and, in the book of Revelation we are told that the heavenly city “has no need of sun or moon to shine on it, for the glory of God is its light, and its lamp is the Lamb [Jesus]”. (Rev 21.23) Light and life go together in John’s Gospel because we need to see God, ourselves and others truly, in order to enjoy life as God intends us to.

How is your home lit? Do you tend to have lights on during the day or save them till dusk? How was the home you grew up in lit?
The baby Jesus is often shown glowing in the dark, and saints often have haloes.  Are there people who have been like lights to you?
We sometimes speak of “lightbulb” moments, when things suddenly make sense to us. Have you experienced lightbulb moments in your faith journey when you have realised something significant about yourself, God or someone else?


Have you got an Advent candle, to count down the days to Christmas? If not, why not make one by using a Sharpie pen to decorate a plain candle. Light it each day in Advent.

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