January 28, 2019
“The people sitting in darkness saw a great light, and light dawned upon those sitting in the region and shadow of death.” From that time Jesus began to make his proclamation and to say, “Change your hearts; for the Kingdom of the heavens has drawn near.” (Matthew 4:16,17 D. Bentley Hart)
Out of the Shadows
“We spend too much time on the shadow and not enough in the light”, I journaled as I ended a meditation on today’s verse. Beyond the shadow of physical death which is very present to us all there are many other deathly shadows over us.
One of them is the spreading sense of outrage expressed everywhere. We are little pockets of anger – at perceived or real grievance, at current or ancient inequities, and by and at political leaders of all stripes. And it is being fueled by social media where everyone has a voice capable of torching someone else’s reputation or ratcheting up a conflict.
When Jesus emerged, it dawned on many that he was light against the deathly shadow. When he walked this earth the atmosphere of exclusion, outrage and hostility was palpable. The diagnosis was that creation lived in the shadow of death and Jesus’ call was to “Change your hearts”.
He still calls us today, not to pretend everything is fine and all just speak nicely. He calls us to see the light of Kingdom in our midst and to work toward solutions that point to the same reconciliation with God for which he gave his life. Let’s spend more time in the light and less time in the shadows.
A Prayer for Today
Loving God, you must grieve when you see the destruction we wreak on one another and on your creation. Help us understand what you mean by “change your hearts”, that we may work for justice, for equity in a way that also brings reconciliation not separation and distrust. …. For Jesus’ sake
P.S. Norm’s January Blog is available here: https://www.touchstone.ca/on-further-reflection/ and also on ITunes.