by Elaine Pierce
My grandson, Leo, had a hard time staying in his "big boy bed" when his parents moved him out of his crib. After several nights of wandering into mommy and daddy's room in the middle of the night, his parents found a great solution: an alarm clock that changes colors when it's time to get up. Leo knew that when the alarm clock turned green, it was time to get out of bed. It turns out that this alarm clock works for adults, too: there is a setting that slowly fills the room with light, so that you are gradually awakened to daytime.
In today's passage, Isaiah describes a world covered with darkness. Into that world comes the light and glory of the Lord. This light is much more powerful than Leo's alarm clock. It is beyond any light we have known on the earth:
"The sun will no more be your light by day, nor will the brightness of the moon shine on you, for the LORD will be your everlasting light, and your God will be your glory. Your sun will never set again, and your moon will wane no more; the LORD will be your everlasting light, and your days of sorrow will end." (Isaiah 60:19-20)
The nation of Israel did not see this kind of light in their time, but we know that the light has come, and that light is Jesus. We know that this prophecy is fulfilled! And yet, look around. People are still walking in darkness. There is death, sorrow, anger and sin everywhere you look. Nations are in upheaval. At times, we ask, why, Lord, why haven't you yet fulfilled this promise?
Yes, the light has come. As we walk through this Advent season, this time of watchful waiting, we know that Jesus will return, and when that happens, our suffering and darkness will be over. Take time this season to reflect on that incredible promise, and to reach out to those in need. Who needs a comforting word? Who needs to know that the light has come, and who can you share this news with?
Lord, I claim the promises of your word. You will be my everlasting light, and our days of sorrow will end. As we look forward to your birth, help us to be watchful and hopeful, and to reach out to those in need. Amen.