Images of light and darkness are common and meaningful themes in the Bible. In the very opening lines of the Bible, we find these two forces in play, seemingly pitted against one another. But in the end, light overcomes the darkness. In our world, we might think of darkness as evil, scary, painful, and void of joy and hope. None of us like the thought of being in the dark, left alone to deal with darkness, or experiencing spirituality, what some have called the dark night of the soul. The reality is that darkness is simply the absence of light. So how do we maintain light so that we have no darkness? Or is darkness necessary so that we appreciate light?
As we begin our journey into the four weeks of Advent, preparing for the celebration of Christmas, the coming of light into the world in the form of the Christ-child, we will explore darkness and light in ways that help us prepare to celebrate the birth of Christ, or as the Apostle John writes, “the light that shines in the darkness.” John 1:5a
You are probably decorating your house with lights this season. Perhaps you are adorning your Christmas tree with lights of a variety of colors. If you have a mantle, maybe you have placed lights there also to help bring in the light of the season. However you choose to light up your house, don’t forget to invite the Holy Light into your home, your family, your soul, and yes, even into those darkest of places that fill all our lives.