November 27, 2018
I’ve lived in the Pacific Northwest for the majority of almost 16 years. As you know, unlike where I’m from, together we are thrust into darkness around 4:22 pm. The change is difficult for many of us. We increase our Vitamin D and turn on our lamps or twinkle lights to manage our seasonal affective disorder. Many of us do what we can to simply make it through with grace.
In my own experience, with the darkness comes reflection. Each year, I consider what the gift of darkness means for me and for the church. What are welcomed to do and be?
I suggest we walk in the light and know that the light has nothing to do with what our eyes see. Walking in the light is a state of mind, a way of being, and it gifts us with the ability to find hope, even in the shadows, most certainly through this night.
This time of year, my daily mantra is the gospel of John: “The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.” Reciting this Scripture interrupts fear and despair and tells my heart that no matter where I find myself, God will meet me there.
I can choose that this womb of Advent preparation is not my tomb, but absolutely the place where new life begins and flourishes. I purpose myself to find value in the darkness rather than run from it; to make friends with darkness, and recognize that every light, every luminous image reminds me that I am not alone; none of us are alone. God is with us!
The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said, “Only in the darkness can you see the stars.” The backdrop of darkness makes even the smallest ray more radiant. We are offered enormous potential for trust and hope even in the dark, when we choose to perceive that it is not setting us far away from possibility, and most certainly, not from God. The season of Advent summons us to consider who we are, where we’ve been and where we are going. Advent is a time of reflection and pause, a sigh where each of us might catch our breath and remember that life is perhaps gestating, but life none the less. May Advent send us breathless with gratitude and awe to the birth of Jesus, which marks a chance to gather rays of light that will see us through any peril.
May we journey together hopeful, challenged, loved and open. May we find our way to new life, whole and beautiful. Walk in the light and take heart! —Rev. Dr. Kelle BrownSubscribe
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