Archive for October 25th, 2018

John 3:16-21Working in the Light, Living in the Name

Thursday, October 25, 2018

Written on September 29, 2009 and posted today as a Favorite . . .

John 3:16 is a verse often quoted and equally often misunderstood; the verses that follow help us to unfold the message more.  We often see the bearing of a cross or the enduring of pain as a punishment when it is not.  As disciples of the New Testament, we anticipate difficulty in our work; we foresee obstacles and recognize them as familiar markers along our roadway.  Each stone over which we stumble, each river we ford, each gap in the path is a recognizable road sign that reminds we are free to turn back or to journey forward.  Each hurdle is another opportunity to express our belief that Jesus walks among us, heals us and restores us.  Every problem is another chance for us to elect the light over darkness.  Each crisis is a new occasion to draw nearer to God and to nestle into the great arching altar of God’s embrace.  Christ who has gone before us has direct knowledge of our pain and has both the capability and desire to repair, to make well, and to restore.  This Christ has come to set each one free from individual burdens, and to call the collective into oneness with him.

Paul also reminds us of this in Ephesians 5:11 when he writes: Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them.  Job tells us: There are those who rebel against the light, who are not acquainted with its ways.  (24:13). 

In order to make progress and to move through life rather than stagnate, we must look for the truth when we are confronted with something that is so insurmountable that it blocks out the light.  And when we find the truth we must step into that shaft of goodness and ask the difficult questions of ourselves and of others that bring still more clarity and even less deception.

When we feel that we are surrounded by shadowy beings that refuse to announce their origin or their goal, we must search for the light, call on God, look for authentic goodness, and abide in constant companionship with those whose labor also bears good fruit.

When the darkness arrives – as it always will – it is a signal for us to take up our sacrifices . . . to bring them into the light . . . and to offer our pain to one who will heal and restore us.

It is time to live and work in the light . . . and to call on Jesus’ name.

A re-post from September 22, 2011.

Image from: http://www.city-data.com/picfilesc/picc32424.php 

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