Friday, January 21, 2011

Darkness and Light

Third Ordinary Sunday Year A

Many of us are afraid of the dark. Ghosts and demons like to hide in the dark. Robbers hide in the dark waiting to jump on some unsuspecting victim. Darkness represents all our fears and anxieties. Darkness represents our ignorance. Darkness represents our brokenness.

But some of us like the dark too. We can hide things in the dark – our selfishness, our unforgiveness, our pride, our hatred, our prejudice. No one knows what we do in the dark. No one knows except God… Sin is darkness.

But the Light of the World has come! Christ the Light has come into the world and now the world is ablaze with that light. Today the prophecy of Isaiah is fulfilled: “The people that lived in darkness has seen a great light; on those who dwell in the land and shadow of death a light has dawned.”

For the people who were living in fear, for the people who were living in ignorance, this light must have been a real source of joy. This is what Isaiah has written: “You have made their gladness greater, you have made their joy increase.”

But for those who like the dark, those who prefer the comfort of the dark to that of the revealing light, the light must have been unwelcomed. This is the reason why Jesus met with so much resistance. This is the reason why he was rejected by the priests, the scribes and the Pharisees. These groups were happy remaining in the dark, because the dark gave them a false sense of security. The darkness allowed them to have control over others. But Christ the Light has come to expose the falsity of this security.

Today we continue to struggle with darkness and light. What are some of the dark areas of our life? Perhaps, darkness represents some of our fears and anxieties. Perhaps it is our prejudice against certain people especially those of other races. Perhaps it is our unwillingness to work with certain people in the Church. I prefer to work with this person but I will boycott all activities organized by this other person. The early Christians also struggled with these kinds of division. “I am for Apollos”, “I am for Cephas”. Paul reminded them that if they wish to call themselves Christians, if they wish to call themselves people of the light, there can be no such divisions.

My brothers and sisters in Christ. We are children of the Light and no longer a people who live in darkness. As people of the light, our relational ties with one another are transformed. Each of us are called like the first disciples into the new community of Christ. Since we are children of light let us ensure that we continue to live in the light – that we continue to work towards unity within our community, that we continue to remove all forms of prejudice, unforgiveness and hatred from our hearts, that we remove all forms of darkness from our lives.

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