Scripture: John 3:16-21
Key verses: (20-21) For all who do evil hate the light and do not come to the light, so that their deeds may not be exposed. But those who do what is true come to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that their deeds have been done in God.
Reflection: The days are growing shorter. I drive home at the end of my work day in the dark. And once I get home, I resist going out again. The dark encourages “cocooning,” with comfort food and a good show to watch on Netflix. As the darkness seems to grow, we prepare ourselves for the coming of God’s light in Jesus Christ. We light candles on an Advent wreath and we look ahead to the celebration of Christmas.
Jesus is the light of the world. In today’s passage Jesus speaks to Nicodemus who came seeking spiritual counsel. Jesus offers the contrast between light and darkness, between good and evil. Those who do what is true are drawn to the light, but those who do evil avoid the light because they want to hide their actions.
If we choose to follow Jesus and to live as a disciple, we are called to live with integrity. A life of integrity means that the choices we make privately and secretly also correspond to the public choices we make. We walk the talk, putting the words of our faith into the actions of our lives. What parts of yourself do you hide? What behaviors do you keep in the dark? Consider spending time with God in prayer about those dark places. We don’t have to share everything with other people but in God’s presence, we are in the light of Christ. The light of Christ illumines all of the decisions we have made. And in that light, we are given the gifts of love and grace to equip us to live faithfully. It starts with being honest with God and letting the light shine into the dark corners of who we are.
Prayer: O God, you bring light and life into the world in Jesus Christ. Give me courage to be myself in your presence. Teach me to trust that your love will be greater than any mistake I’ve ever made. Have mercy on me and fill me with your grace. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.
Author: Millie Snyder
[Scripture quotations are from New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved].