This year at MOPS, our focus is on light, and particularly on how light interacts with darkness. We can look around our world and see examples of this in the natural world, in society and in the spiritual world. This Advent season is the perfect time to reflect on what light is and what it means for us personally.
In the natural world, we understand that it is impossible for any darkness to survive if light is within it. We have tested this out and know it to be true. Our children might ask for the hall light to stay on at night so they can have just a crack of light pouring into their rooms. We know that even if the smallest light is illuminated, there is no more darkness… our eyes adjust and we can see. Light does not fear darkness. Light wins every time. Darkness can not survive in the presence of light.
This imagery perfectly describes who Jesus is. He calls Himself the light of the world. He does not say He is “like” light, but rather that He IS light. Jesus is called Light over 10 times in the book of John alone. In John 8, He says “I am the light of the world; whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life”. Before time, before the universe was created, before light was ignited, Jesus was there, hovering in the darkness. Jesus knows darkness but does not fear it.
Can you imagine a world, where in which Jesus’ light does not dwell? Before His birth, there was only the hope of light. Before His birth, there were only glimpses. And then Jesus. Jesus came in as a child, God and man entwined, of the earth and of divine. Jesus flooded the dark world with His light. He is the light of the world. Everything changed from that moment on.
But darkness still exists, in the natural world and in our lives. Jesus knew darkness and plunged head first into it. When He took his final breath, on the cross, the Bible tells us that the earth shook and was immersed into total darkness. Seemingly, the light was put out. The moment of our greatest hope happened in utter darkness. But the light, and our hope was not put out, because He rose 3 days later, conquering death and darkness. You see, He had to fall head first into the darkness in order to overcome it and rise up shining victoriously. Jesus went willingly into the darkness so that you and I could receive His light.
I love this song. One of my favorite lines is “the soul now felt it’s worth” which you may recognize from the traditional “Oh Holy Night” carol. Have you thought about what that means? Because of Jesus, my soul no longer wanders. My soul knows it is the beloved of the Creator. My soul is fulfilled, quenched. I know I am valuable and oh so loved because He came, He lived and He died for me. Does your soul feel it’s worth?
Another beautiful line, “Light will chase and find us”. Jesus actively pursues you. He is chasing you. He is plunging into the darkness to find you and to give you His light.
Maybe you are reading this today and you know all this. Jesus’ light is alive inside you and you know your worth. In Matthew 5, Jesus now says that “You are the light of the world” and to “let your light shine before others that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven”. So then be the light. Bring the light to others. Expel darkness with your very presence.
Maybe you can’t see any light because you’re in a season of darkness. Maybe you’re sad, sick, stressed or struggling. Know that just as He was hovering in the darkness in the beginning, He is hovering in your darkness as well. If Jesus can be found in the darkness, we can have hope and peace and have absolutely nothing to fear. Remember that only the light of Jesus can cast out your darkness. Friend, run into the light… run to Jesus.
Or maybe you don’t know this light, you don’t feel worthy or pursued. I’m here today to tell you that He loves you and He has moved heaven and earth for you to read this message today. THIS is Him pursuing you. Please don’t let this moment pass you by... if you have no one in your life to talk about Jesus with, I would love the opportunity to connect with you personally. Please message me.
This holiday season, let’s keep our eyes on the Light. Sweet baby Jesus is easy to love and cherish, but let’s not forget Jesus the man, Jesus the light, Jesus who came to reconcile. Along with all the food, gifts and fun, let’s remember to be the light of Jesus to those around us and to bring Him praise for all He’s done.