Epiphany triggers some powerful memories for me. It was on the Day of Epiphany in 1967 that a bishop placed his hands on my head, at the behest of my local church, and set me apart for ministry. I have often looked back to that moment when life and ministry were challenging, and I would find encouragement to continue. In the darkest moments I would recall his irrevocable call on my life and that remembrance would ‘light the way.’
I remember another Epiphany, which I decided to spend in the Arctic. January 6th in Aklavik was among the shortest of days. It was then that I came to first realize my body’s need for light. While I went North to be an encouragement I found myself battling sadness in that dark. Even gloomy Toronto in January was a welcome relief upon my return. Today I take regular doses of vitamin D and type before a special lamp to fend off the effects of a dark winter. Through this experience I have developed a deep appreciation for light.
In the season of Epiphany, we celebrate that ‘Light’ has broken into a dark world. It is a ‘Light’ to lighten the gentiles! The ‘Light’ has a name. His name is Jesus!
I am as sensitive as a canary in a coal mine, to light deprivation, but I cannot imagine the spiritual consequences of living apart from the Light. This dark world needs the Light of the World.
I am reminded that Jesus says to his followers “You are the of the World.” Because we have the Light of Christ within us we are now to bear that Light to the world. “Let your light so shine before people that … they may glorify My father in Heaven.”
We have an opportunity in a world full of rage, darkness, and discouragement, to bear light. We have the opportunity to shine as the stars which stand out all the brighter because of the dark background.
So rather than bemoaning the darkness and its curse, I can decide to seize the opportunity rather than feel a victim of the dark.
We have a stark choice between partnering with the darkness or obediently shining for Jesus. The great news of the Gospel is that Light has come, and darkness can never conquer it!
These are some of my Epiphany thoughts.