“I am the light of the world.
Whoever follows Me will never walk in darkness,
but will have the light of life.”
This is one of the great “I ams ” of Jesus. It relates directly to the announcement by God of His Name to Moses – “I am.” It is a name that reveals absolute glory, majesty, power and authority. In it God is saying that He is without limit and can reveal Himself however He wishes. And here Jesus refers to Himself as ‘the Light of the world.”
It is significant that as God began to create – as the Holy Spirit was brooding over the darkness – the first thing for which He called was light. And so too in our lives, when darkness settles over the spirits of the individual and the community, our primary need is for the Light. On the one hand this is so that we will recognise the darkness that is stifling and subduing and slowly suffocating the life from us – and also begin to appreciate what it is and from whence it comes. However this is not enough. We also need to ‘see the Light’ that will reveal the way forward, free us from this bondage to decay and allow us to begin to truly live once more.
This solution is not mere words, suggestions or encouraging advice. As wise as these may be there are nevertheless many areas and conditions in life from which we cannot or will not escape in our own strength. We all know this. This light that sets us free is in fact a Person – the Person and Presence in our lives and situations of the Lord Jesus Himself. That is why His great call is so encouraging and filled with hope. It is the call, not of a prophet, but of God Himself.
“Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened,
and I will give you rest”
Each one of us will have lugged into 2017 a whole cluster of things that we would rather, or should rather, do without. We will also still be living within a context that has not magically changed for the better overnight. Now is the time, as the hope for a better year still floats around us, to turn to the one Person who not only can make a difference but who says, in fact, that He will.
Note finally that He does not say that He will merely tell us what to do. He undertakes t0 give us ‘rest’. It is His strength that will bring this about – not ours.
I don’t need good advice – I need the love and strength of the Lord.
Lord Jesus I need You. I need Your Light and Your Life for myself, those I love and my community. At the start of this year I come to You as best I can – and I will keep coming to You throughout the year ahead looking to You as the Light in my life. Bless me Lord for I sorely need You. Amen.
(Photo: (c) Catherine Bondonno)