“The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light.” Isaiah 9:2 (The Message)
Today is the declared first day of winter—the winter solstice, which astronomically marks the beginning of shortening nights and lengthening days. To me, that means that tomorrow I will experience more minutes of sunshine than I do today–and a brighter spirit. How appropriate that the scripture for today reflects on darkness and light.
One year during Advent, as I drove home from work, I realized for the first time that it was not a coincidence that Christmas came in December. The streets I drove on were brightened with holiday decorations—tree trunks wrapped with white lights and green lights surrounded the branches. Cascading icicle lights framed the front of homes. Deer, snowmen, candy canes, and manger scenes proudly adorned lawns. The drive home ended too soon—I wanted to capture the light for a few more moments.
Out of the December darkness comes the Light—God’s gift to us to brighten every day of our lives—to give us comfort, direction, hope, and eternal life.
O little town of Bethlehem,
How still we see thee lie;
Above thy deep and dreamless sleep
The silent stars go by:
Yet in thy dark streets shineth
The everlasting Light;
The hopes and fears of all the years
Are met in thee to-night. Amen.