Beyond the Manger: December 16, 2015

Matthew 6:22-23 (NRSV)

22 “The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light; 23 but if your eye is unhealthy, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!

Matthew 6:22-23 (The Voice)

22 The eye is the lamp of the body. You draw light into your body through your eyes, and light shines out to the world through your eyes. So if your eye is well and shows you what is true, then your whole body will be filled with light. 23 But if your eye is clouded or evil, then your body will be filled with evil and dark clouds. And the darkness that takes over the body of a child of God who has gone astray—that is the deepest, darkest darkness there is.

Devotional Content

I know there have been times when you can remember being in the dark.  Perhaps you think about a ‘dark’ time of your life.  Or you might think about an experience of physical darkness when not even a ray of light could enter your eye.

Many of you will remember Rev. Jim Gulley and his missionary experience of being trapped in the Hotel Montana during the earthquake in Haiti.  It was late afternoon on Tuesday January 12, 2010 when a 7.0 earthquake left 1.5 million people homeless and killed as many as 300,000 in a few moments.  In that moment, Jim and a cluster of his friends were trapped in the darkness of a collapsed hotel lobby.  It would take more than 50 hours before rescue crews could locate them and provide the light of day.  Jim survived but some of his friends died beside him that day.  Without question, it was a time of deep darkness.

But, if your spiritual eye is healthy…the light of Christ will always shine in.  Jim was blessed with a healthy set of spiritual eyes and a heart that beats simultaneously with gratitude and grief.

The New Testament Book of Romans and I Corinthians (chapter 12 in each) teach us about the Body of Christ.  It is the image of the church that is compared to our physical body.  Both the church and the physical body are invited to be blessed with the fullness of health.  A part of that health is the ability to see the light of Jesus in our lives.  Jesus himself said that he was the Light of the World.

Our task is clear, it is the physical and spiritual experience of opening our eyes to the one who is the Light.  Where do you need Light today?


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