The Light That Overcomes
Preparing for the Third Sunday after the Epiphany: Three Days before Sunday (Year A)
Psalter: Psalm 27:1-6
Old Testament: 1 Samuel 1:1-20
Epistle: Galatians 1:11-24
God of Blazing light, through the power of the cross you shattered our darkness, scattering the fears that bind us and setting us free to live as your children. Give us courage and conviction that we may joyfully turn and follow you into new adventures of faithful service, led by the light that shines through Jesus Christ our Savior. Amen.
The Lord is my light and my salvation;
whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the stronghold of my life;
of whom shall I be afraid? (Psalm 27:1).
Many years ago when I a college student, I went to Haiti on a short-term mission trip. We were in the northeastern part of the country close to the Dominican Republic—so close, in fact, at night we could hear the caravans of smugglers on donkeys bringing in contraband from the DR.
We were high in the mountains where there was no running water nor electricity to be found. For the first time in my life, I experienced true darkness. With no artificial light pollution, the stars in the sky where so bright and so numerous that it was almost as if I could reach up and grab them. In my new experience of darkness, light also took on a new meaning.
When the Psalmist says, “The Lord is my light,” he was living in a world like the one I experienced in the mountains of Haiti. Darkness is not a good place. It is filled with bandits, beasts, and evil spirits. Light reveals the thieves, the wild animals, and sends the malevolent forces into the shadows. For the Lord to be the Psalmist’s light was more than being able to see; it was a matter of life chasing away death. For God to be the Psalmist’s salvation was more than a spiritual deliverance; it was salvation from all the threats hidden by the darkness.
Even though most of us live in places where light is always near, it is still a dark world. The Lord is indeed our light and our salvation. The Fourth Gospel says of Jesus that he is the light that shines in the darkness which is not able to overcome him nor what he has done for us (John 1:5). On this day, like the Psalmist we can say with confidence, “The Lord is our light and salvation, whom shall we fear?”
Jesus’ divine light is life-saving for all who believe.
PRAYER: Perfect Light of revelation, as you shone in the life of Jesus, whose epiphany we celebrate, so shine in us and through us, that we may become beacons of truth and compassion, enlightening all creation with deeds of justice and mercy. Amen.
Check out my web portal to all things “Faith Seeking Understanding” here.