Readings: Isaiah 9:2-7; Psalm 96; Titus 2:11-14; Luke 2:1-14
The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who lived in a land of deep darkness – on them light has shined
You have multiplied the nation, you have increased its joy; they rejoice before you as with joy at the harvest, as people exult when dividing plunder.
For the yoke of their burden, and the bar across their shoulders, the rod of their oppressor, you have broken as on the day of Midian.
For all the boots of the tramping warriors and all the garments rolled in blood shall be burned as fuel for the fire.
For a child has been born for us, a son given to us; authority rests upon his shoulders; and he is named Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
His authority shall grow continually, and there shall be endless peace for the throne of David and his kingdom. he will establish and uphold it with justice and with righteousness from this time onward and forevermore.
The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this.
Isaiah 9:2-7, NRSV
In a world where darkness brings acts of cruelty and callous indifference to the suffering of others, Christ’s light inspires small acts of kindness as well as acts of unspeakable love. A light so strong, it leads a man to willingly take the place of a stranger in a starvation bunker at Auschwitz. Another, so inspired by that light, sacrifices his physical and emotional health to lead a decades long struggle to successfully end the slave trade and then slavery in the colonies of Great Britain.
One old Christian hymn says His brightness ended darkness. How true it is that when we bring the light of Christ’s love to others, darkness is replaced by light. What joy we feel when we experience and share Christ’s love. Saint Paul tells us we were created to do these works as expressions of God’s love. What a joy it is to be led by the Light which enables us to see God’s Truth in our fallen world.
Offered by Phil Ciulla, child of God.