Isaiah 59:9 – Therefore justice is far from us, and deliverance does not reach us; we wait for light, but there is only darkness; and for brightness, but we walk in gloom.
Why is there never a lightbulb at my house? That’s not exactly the right question. Why is there never the kind of lightbulb I need at my house? Whether it’s a spotlight for the front porch or the nightlight in the hallway, a three-way lamp bulb or a bent tip frosted bulb with a candelabra base, I can never seem to find the one I need. Fluorescent, incandescent, CFLs, LEDs, halogens… so many choices are out there!
At our house, we have a whole box of lightbulbs: big ones, small ones, some that look so strange that I’m not sure where they go. If I need something specific, though, you can be sure it ain’t there.
I don’t usually think about lightbulbs until I need one. I’ve become very dependent on light over the years, and that’s not likely to change any time soon. As these eyes get a little older, I’m even more inclined to need a bit of additional light. Where once I could read fine print with no assistance at all, I now need eyeglasses and a whole lot of light. I’ve been known to couple the brightest overhead light in the house with a flashlight held in my mouth just to focus on a splinter. It’s not a pretty sight, but I find it effective. You do what you have to do.
When watching a good detective show on TV, I’m always fascinated by how they work a case with light. The concentrated beam of a flashlight narrows the focus and allows the agents to see things that would disappear with more diverse illumination. I may never process a crime scene, but I have used the flashlight method to find my earring that was lurking in the carpet. Losing a favorite earring would be a terrible crime, after all.
Jesus referred to himself as Light several times. He never differentiated the type of light, but it’s safe to say that Jesus is whatever type of light is needed at the time! I’m drawn to the passage from Isaiah 59 about waiting for light and brightness but walking in darkness and gloom. Isaiah is addressing social justice in a time when the people have turned away from God. Oppression is rampant and justice will not appear until repentance, forgiveness and a return to God’s will materializes. I’m reminded how blind I can be when I walk around without Jesus. When lacking that concentrated beam of focused Jesus-Light, neither social nor any other kind of justice is confronted. Turning my back on God is the path to darkness and gloom.
As I reflect on my own journey, I remember how many different options are out there to choose. Contrary to lightbulbs at my house, though, Jesus IS available and is always just the right kind of illumination allowing me to see clearly. During this Lenten season, may I speak of God’s wonderful acts – God who has called me out of darkness and into his amazing light!
PRAYER FROM PSALM 146
Light of the World, thank you for providing illumination for me through Jesus. Light my path, guide my steps, and see me through the darkness as I move closer to you each day. Help me to see your plan for my life, and focus my efforts to shine for others. Amen.