Share The Light
It was the middle of the night.
We were staying in a cottage in the New Forest. We had only been married a year and my husbands’ family had invited us to come on holiday with them. Everyone was sleeping soundly.
…That was until the blood-curdling scream.
You see, back in our flat, if you needed to get out of bed for a wee, the street lamp shone just enough (through our really naff bedroom blind) for you to tip-toe quietly to the bathroom.
Not so in the New Forest!
We were in the middle of nowhere. No street lamps. No cars. Just the beautiful quiet…and a quality black-out blind… and one valiant man attempting to make it to the en-suite like a ninja in the dark.
He didn’t make it.
I wouldn’t have thought that summer, that the image of my husband clutching his leg, weepy-eyed and wincing in pain would have been so ‘Christmassy’.
But it is the backdrop to the biblical Christmas:
“The people walking in darkness have seen a great light;
On those living in the land of deep darkness
A light has dawned.” (Isaiah 9:2)
We don’t need to look far to see that our world is a land of ‘deep darkness’. Stories from hospital wards, refugee camps and food banks tell us that.
It’s touch is everywhere. In the first world and the third world. In our businesses and in our Sixth Form canteens. In our homes and in the lives of our friends.
It’s not just on the outside, it’s inside all of us.
The longing, the fighting, the fearing – we want to be known and yet we hide in the shadows at the same time.
How often do we replay what we’ve just said/thought/done back in our minds and wish we could just press ‘delete’?!
We’re like that valiant ninja trying to make his way to the bathroom – but smashing up ourselves (and everything else) en route!
But to us – to this place, He came.
Because the ‘light’ of Isaiah 9:2 is the child of Isaiah 9:6:
“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given.”
Notice, he isn’t simply born – he is given.
God didn’t leave us in the dark. He didn’t give us a torch either – so we can try and navigate our own way through the darkness.
He loved us so much that he gave us His own Son – the light of the world.
Jesus entered into the land of darkness. He took on our flesh, our brokenness, our sin and our shame. The child laid in the manger is later the man nailed on the cross. The man laid in the tomb is later the Risen One who has blasted through death, hell and darkness for us.
He says, with his hand outstretched, “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
Claire is part of the Festive team. She lives by the sea with her husband and two children. They have perfected the art of eating Dominos on the beach as their son has developed his own seagull-defence-martial-art-skills to save their dinner!