|Living in God's light|
|Written by BILL RYAN Sentinel Religion Editor|
|Friday, 13 April 2012 08:59|
"And God said, 'Let there be light,' and there was light," describes one of the first acts of the creator as outlined in Genesis 1:3.
In the Bible, from Genesis to Revelation, the actual word "light," as well as other veiled references to light are prominent throughout. Most people of faith can likely name several off the top of their head.
The "Light of the world" is oft used as a term for, as well as a description of, Jesus Christ.
In fact Jesus, himself, says it in John's gospel, "When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, 'I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.'" (John 8:12)
Light has been associated with Christ early on, including as the light from a star in the East guided the Three Wise Men to the Christ Child after his birth and being laid in a manger.
What is implied in that statement goes far beyond mere words. Without Jesus, without God, there is darkness. While nothing is absolute, many believe confidently the majority of people who go through life without God are walking in darkness.
For Christians, Jesus is the light that brightens lives, shows the way, illuminates minds and warms hearts.
The famous biblical passage, "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have everlasting life" (John 3:16) is often quoted and promoted at sporting events.
Father Herb Weber, a Catholic priest, recently told his congregation they must also remember a verse that follows, noting, "That's not all there is ... John 3:16 is only half the story."
The scripture continues, "This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil." (John 3:19)
"What Jesus is really saying is God expects us to respond by living in the light. It's a two-part proposition," he said.
Despite the truth of John 3:16, Weber said, "Let us not stop there, let's get the whole picture."
He thus reminded people of faith to have a brighter and a healthier attitude in life and not be the ones who have a dark and dreary personality. Generally, people of faith shine brighter in this world. Of course, everyone knows exceptions on both sides.
As previously noted, God's sunlight is vital to our lives. The sun is essential to keep the planet at a livable temperature. It is necessary for the survival of all living things, humans, plants and all the animals. It is hard to conceive how all the intricacies of life could have "just happened" to work so perfectly together without a divine plan.
For believers, there must be a creator God full of power. Open your mind and use your senses to get a vision of God and all God's creation.
It is God's light that transforms moisture from a rain storm into a beautiful rainbow. The Bible says the rainbow following the great flood was a symbol of God's promise for Noah and his family.
In Genesis 9:15-16, God told Noah and his sons, "And I will remember my covenant, which is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh; and the waters shall no more become a flood to destroy all flesh. And the (rain)bow shall be in the cloud; and I will look upon it, that I may remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is upon the earth."
The rainbow remains for us a beautiful token of the Lord's covenant made with the world. The rainbow has always been an attraction for humans, a sign of beauty and hope, a sign of love and more.
At a separate service, Weber told of a beautiful "double rainbow" which appeared after one evening service at his church. He shared how the congregation was overjoyed at the sight and wanted to share the view with all.
Weber's message urged his congregation to share with others the story of "light" through the resurrected Jesus. And to share that story with the utmost enthusiasm.
The entire spectrum of colors converge in a rainbow. It is a true symbol of how people of all colors and beliefs should come together. But the rainbow is only one aspect of the power of light and the use of light.
The light and the energy of God permeates our lives enriching us in ways we can see, feel, sense and certainly in ways beyond our comprehension.
"We are called to live in the light the way the Lord wants us to," Weber summarized.
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