COREreflections: Why I Will Go Look at Christmas Lights This Year

light-in-the-darkThe light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.  John 1:5

Last night I was reading a devotion with my children from Ann Voskamp’s, Unwrapping the Greatest Gift: A Family Celebration of Christmas.  In the story, she writes, “Jesus is the only real light in the whole wide dark world.”    As I read these words, I thought about the Christmas lights in our neighborhood.  Some streets have one or two houses with just a few lights, on other streets, each house is brightly lit…you could literally not use your headlights to drive down them even at night! (I wouldn’t recommend that, just saying.)  As the kids and I drive home each night, we always get excited when we get to the “good” streets…the ones with a lot of light!  I think we like it more after we have driven down a dark street and then turn into a flood of light envelopes all of the homes. We love the brightness..the white lights, the pastels, the deep colors.   I wondered, as I sat their finishing the devotion with my kids, why lights were so exciting to us.

I  think it is because in the darkness of our long days, the shadows cast by obstacles of life, the Christmas lights remind us of hope. They take the ordinary and make it beautiful.  They take the hidden and make it known… And coming from the dark, the light is all that more beautiful! There is something special about the Christmas lights..different than street lights or decorative home lighting.  Christmas lights bring bright and glorious light that makes us gasp in awe and wonder.

Just like Jesus.  He takes my heart full of shadows and casts them out…there is no darkness in His light.  He takes the ordinary parts of my day and turns them from obstacles into beautiful adornments that reflect His light.  My busy schedule becomes a means for His light to shine.  And His glorious, bright light, makes things that have been hidden from me…like hope… and shines it blindingly, so that I may bask in its presence– I gasp in awe and wonder.

So I will make a point to enjoy the Christmas lights this year and when I do, I will remember that a Light does, indeed, shine in the darkness, and the darkness will never overcome Him.

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