Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Advent Day 3, 2015 - Let us walk in the light

The word that Isaiah son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem.

In days to come
   the mountain of the
Lord’s house
shall be established as the highest of the mountains,
   and shall be raised above the hills;
all the nations shall stream to it.
   Many peoples shall come and say,
‘Come, let us go up to the mountain of the
   to the house of the God of Jacob;
that he may teach us his ways
   and that we may walk in his paths.’
For out of Zion shall go forth instruction,
   and the word of the
Lord from Jerusalem.
He shall judge between the nations,
   and shall arbitrate for many peoples;
they shall beat their swords into ploughshares,
   and their spears into pruning-hooks;
nation shall not lift up sword against nation,
   neither shall they learn war any more.

O house of Jacob,
   come, let us walk
   in the light of the
Lord! -- Isaiah 2:1-5

One thing that most people hate about winter is that the days are getting shorter and that the nights are longer. I guess I'm weird.  Except for feeling like my extremities may never warm up, I like the longer nights. I like seeing the colored lights shining in the dark and the chance to see stars and constellations like my old friend Orion. Of course, if it were a choice between short nights and 110°+ temperatures during the day and being cold and having the longer ones, I will take winter. I can always put on more layers; I can't always take them off and still remain decent.

Darkness makes lights imperative, at least in our time. Even in the days of the cave man, fires kept the night at bay and made people feel more secure. The light and warmth of hearths and fires were later supplemented by candles and oil lamps that made rooms warm and cozy and gave families time together to talk, read, and pray.

Light is an important symbol in Advent. As we prepare for the coming of the light of the world at Christmas, we light candles and white or colored bulbs inside and out to welcome the approaching season. Like the beacon fires on mountaintops transmitted signals across distances, our lights signal the approach of the joyous celebration of the birth of our Messiah.

Isaiah invites  the house of Jacob to walk in the light of the Lord. We too are invited to walk in that light. When is a better time than when the world is dark and cold? 

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