Jesus uses the powerful images of darkness and light to describe his mission and to invite us to join Him.
Think back to a time when you were alone in the dark and had a hard time finding your way. How did it feel to finally find the light?
As a little boy, I used to dread going into the kitchen at night to get a snack. I used to run to the refrigerator, find the handle, open the door, and AH, the LIGHT! Once I found the snack that I was looking for, I would slam the door and run as fast as I could back to the living room.
Everyone has been in a dark place, spiritually as well as physically. Can you remember a time when Jesus’ presence or words were a light for you? Jesus wants to cast light on the darkness that makes you afraid. What darkness in your life do you want to bring to Jesus and ask him to enlighten during these holy days of Lent?
God has given us many sources of light: the sun, the full moon on a dark night, and the radiance of Jesus risen on Easter morning, calling us to a future full of hope!
In a dark place, even the smallest light takes on great importance. It’s an awesome call to let the Lord’s radiance shine on you --- shine through you, to others. How do you feel that you reflect the Lord’s light to others? Have there been times when you might have blocked that light, rather than let God’s light shine through you?
One of my missionary friends told me a story about a tribe that was given a sundial. They were so pleased with the gift and so wanted to impress their neighbors that they built a special hut over it! Are you like that?
I had lunch with some high school students one day. One boy told me how our parish youth ministry might be improved. Finally, I mentioned to him, “You know, I don’t think I’ve ever seen you at Mass.” “So, what?” he asked, “I’m a good Catholic!”
The Christian philosopher, Soren Kierkegaard once noted, “It’s so much easier to become a Christian when you aren’t one than to become one when you assume you already are.”
These 40 days of Lent are a special time for those to become Christians who aren’t ones as well as for those to become ones who assume they already are! Let the light of Jesus open your eyes!
Fr Mark Zacker