December 1, 2014

Monday-World AIDS Day John 1: 1-18 “In the (genesis) beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God and the Word was God.” That is the beautiful poetic form that opens the Gospel of John. With those graceful words the Gospel account invites us to explore the heart of God and to find Jesus, the Son. During the season of Advent we find ourselves waiting and watching. We are not waiting with a passive spirit but rather we are waiting on tiptoes with a spirit of expectation. We know that God will teach us something new if we are faithful, open, and willing to learn. With that spirit of hope and anticipation…we wait and watch. We even wonder what we will find. John wants us to find Jesus. He wants us to know that Jesus has arrived in the world ‘not by human decision’ but by the will of God. John describes the Lord as the ‘true light’ and the one who is filled with ‘grace and truth.’ Where do we find that grace and truth on this first day of December 2014? On a personal note, many of you know that Sue and I have been working in the HIV/AIDS community for over 20 years. We have actually been living with HIV for most of those years. It seems strange, but each time we find a light that begins to shine brightly…we also seem to find yet another dark street where the virus is flourishing. The first day of December has been declared to be World AIDS Day since 1988. Each year people look for the hope of ‘getting to zero’ infections and each year we are disappointed as millions around the world continue to die. It would be easy to ask ‘where is the light?’ But for people of faith, the question shifts from ‘where is the light’ to how can I be infused with the light of Christ so I can be a light in the world. Our Advent task is to (1) find that light, (2) to be renewed by the love of God, and (3) to discover new ways of dispelling the darkness. Check our verse 4 once again: “In him was life, and that life was that light of all the world.” Remember, our Advent journey will not lead us to a tree with beautiful packages…it will lead us to Jesus.

 John 1: 1-18

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2He was in the beginning with God. 3All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being. What has come into being 4in him was life,* and the life was the light of all people. 5The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it. 6 There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. 7He came as a witness to testify to the light, so that all might believe through him. 8He himself was not the light, but he came to testify to the light. 9The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world.* 10 He was in the world, and the world came into being through him; yet the world did not know him. 11He came to what was his own,* and his own people did not accept him. 12But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God, 13who were born, not of blood or of the will of the flesh or of the will of man, but of God. 14 And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father’s only son,* full of grace and truth. 15(John testified to him and cried out, ‘This was he of whom I said, “He who comes after me ranks ahead of me because he was before me.” ’) 16From his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace. 17The law indeed was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18No one has ever seen God. It is God the only Son,* who is close to the Father’s heart,* who has made him known.


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