Be the Light
For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light, for light produces every kind of goodness and righteousness and truth. -Ephesians 5:8-9
I remember hearing a story of a little boy who was impressed by the stars. He had many questions for his father about them. “Are the stars there all the time?” and “why don’t we see them during the day?” His father answered, “You can only see them at night. Darkness is always more beautiful when we look up at the stars rather than the corners of blackness.”
God’s desire for all of us is to go stargazing, to look for the light. And yet so many people only see darkness, especially in suffering. In my life, I get a lot of people who tell me all of their thoughts about this. I get a lot of opinions from strangers, family, and friends who don’t go to Church anymore. They tell me everything that is wrong with the Church and everything that is wrong with God. They explain to me why God isn’t loving: because He allows so much suffering and darkness in this world.
If we really think about this, we may have a lot of things that come to our minds. We may be frustrated with God especially in these last three years with the COVID pandemic, political unrest, war, personal struggles, and illness. We may only see darkness. We may have so many questions: Why is there so much suffering? Why is there so much darkness going on right now? What, if anything, does Advent have to do with any of this? I would suggest that Advent has everything to do with our suffering, our darkness. Advent teaches us to have the courage and humility to look up and hope in God’s promises – to search for God’s promise.
If we allow ourselves to be stargazers for the light of Christ and to learn about His love, our experience of His love will help us to move forward on the right path even if we may feel lost in life. Why? Because you and I are made in the image and likeness of God. If you and I do not understand who God is and why He sent His Son to be born that first Christmas day only to die on the Cross, then we will never ever understand who we really are. We will never really understand what we are meant for and why our suffering matters. God so loved the world that He sent His only Son. This Advent season, I ask for us to be stargazers in search of this Light in the midst of darkness.