Author: Karen Hoover
And God said, “let there be light” and there was light. And God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness God called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, one day. Genesis 1:3-5
With the recent seasonal adjustment to our time—and body—clocks, my thoughts have been drawn to reflections on light and dark. And contributing to my ruminations have been my concerns about the dark and foreboding place in which our country seems to be stuck.
I’m not a morning person so rising early while it’s dark (and cold) is tough. Even the rays of sunrise that eventually pierce the darkness feel like small consolation to me after surmounting the initial hurdle of awakening in the dark. Yet, I love being out under the night sky, searching the heavens for a bright planet as its light penetrates the darkness. Plus, there might be the brief pleasure of seeing a falling star and feeling momentarily smiled upon by the universe.
Now other people have different responses to light and dark, and seek different balances. Some of us are “early birds” and others of us are “night owls.” And we don’t all share the same political concerns. What we do have in common, as faithful Christians, is that we are called to be “the light of the world,” (Matthew 5:14) projecting the love of God into all that we are and all that we do and to every person we meet. And when our efforts fall short of creating the heaven of justice and peace we seek here on earth, we are called to believe that “the light [of Jesus] shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it” (John 1:5), nor the light we seek to project.
Perhaps this twice-annual process of adjusting our time and body clocks can also be a time to re-calibrate the light that shines from us. Are we springing forward with “life and light” or turning back into the darkness of complacency? Are we lighting a candle and then placing it under a bushel basket? Or are we stepping out in faith that God’s “word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path”? (Psalms 119:105)
A Prayer: Each dawning day is an opportunity to reflect God’s love as we seek to create justice and make peace. And every nightfall provides rest to all who labor. For this, we give thanks to God, from whom all light comes. Amen.