Luke 1:76-80 – Zechariah foretells the ministry of John the Baptist

And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Most High;
for you will go before the Lord to prepare his ways,
to give knowledge of salvation to his people
by the forgiveness of their sins.
By the tender mercy of our God,
the dawn from on high will break upon us,
to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.”

The child grew and became strong in spirit, and he was in the wilderness until the day he appeared publicly to Israel.

Light - Walton United Church, Oakville, Ontario

Light is a recurring theme in the Bible, and speaks of hope and possibility, given to us all, but especially “those who sit in darkness.” The static, shrinking tone of this image evokes feelings of resignation and despair, of giving up and pulling away from possibility, and ultimately of accepting a life based in fear and ‘less’. God’s abundant love however wants to shine into our hearts and dispel this darkness. This light will guide our feet, to follow the path of Jesus – will show us how to live – into the way of peace. Where we have patches of darkness in our own lives, remember that God is with us, tenderly caring for us, bringing us back to the light – be that gently, just as the light of dawn slowly creeps across the sky, or sudden and blazing like sunshine breaking through the clouds.

Caring God, You never leave us and never give up on us. Thank You for staying with us as we sit in darkness, and for tenderly coaxing us into the light. Thank You for Your abundant love and mercy that invites us to a life of peace and possibility. Open our hearts to receive Your eternal compassion and understanding. Amen.

Thank you for joining us on this prayerful path through Advent.
Blessings and best wishes for 2019.


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