Devotions

The Light in Between

This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light and in him there is no darkness at all. 1 John 1:5 

We are fresh from celebrating Christmas and now we look to a new year beginning. This week is an “in between time” as we wrap up one holiday and get ready for another. I don’t know about you, but when I’m in the middle of having to clean up one thing and prepare for something else, I experience some confusion. It’s like saying goodbye and hello at the same time. We also have mixed feelings about change and things are always changing. That said, there are many times in life when we are stuck in between one thing and another. These transitions can be uncomfortable. We let go of what is behind us and turn our heads to look at what may come. Depending on what’s happening around us that can elicit joy or trepidation. Perhaps the secret to managing these moments is to simply be present where you are no matter what’s going on and just do the next right thing. As people of faith, we know that the joy of Christmas doesn’t fade because the tree is no longer in the corner. We understand that the new year shouldn’t be greeted with dark thoughts. God remains with us and in him there is no darkness at all. The light of God shines in all places so we know it falls on this in between time as well. 

Jesus came and a young couple welcomed him as their own. Angels appeared to shepherds and filled the air with a message of hope and songs of great joy. It all happened and then came the next day and the day after that. Staying present requires us to trust that the light of God will keep shining on us, in us and through us as each new day begins. It’s encouragement to me to read from John’s letter that God is light and no darkness can overcome that light. God is good all the time is not a casual phrase. This is faith declaring belief in God’s good character. Light symbolizes what is good and true and holy. Light reveals while darkness hides. Light illuminates everything and makes it easier to avoid pitfalls. I’m reminded of one of my favorite hymns “I want to walk as a child of the light. I want to follow Jesus. God sent his son to give light to the world. The star of my life is Jesus. In him there is no darkness at all, the night and the day are both alike. The lamb is the light of the city of God. Shine in my heart Lord Jesus.” Welcome the light of God into your life and let it shine everywhere and all in between. 

Merry Christmas

“Therefore, the Lord himself will give you a sign. Look, the young woman is with child and shall bear a son, and shall name him Immanuel.” Isaiah 7:14 NRSV 

Throughout the Advent season, we light candles. One for hope. One for peace. One for Joy. And one for Love. Each week points us to the light of Christ, and on Christmas Eve, we will light the Christ candle.  

What does it mean to journey through Advent with Christ - with hope, peace, and joy…all leading us to the love that God so freely offers through his Son, Jesus Christ?  

Hope gives us the opportunity to see beyond and walk through our circumstances. Hope offers the promise of God’s goodness on the other side of whatever we are going through. Hope in Christ leads us to peace. When we receive the peace of Christ, we can experience life with the heart and eyes of Jesus. Doing so, allows us to let grace and mercy fall upon us and protect us from the things of this world. Fully embracing the peace of Christ brings joy to our lives in the midst of our circumstances.   

Advent is more than the candles we light. Advent is a season of preparing our hearts for the coming of Christ. In our preparation, we open our hearts to receive the love of God. Our greatest gift of all is the gift of the Christ Child.  

The prophet Isaiah proclaimed, “Therefore, the Lord himself will give you a sign. Look, the young woman is with child and shall bear a son and shall name him Immanuel.”  Merry Christmas, indeed!   

Posted by Betsy Butler
Tags: devotion

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