Christmastime Day Six
December 31, 2018
By Elaine Friedrich
Written by Maren Vick
Standing with the Father
What do we do when we run into a stranger? Do we avoid them? Are we scared of them? Do we trust them? Do we talk to them? Do we believe them?
What if that stranger tells us something unexpected, such as “I am the light of the world”?
One reaction might be to offer a placating “Oh, how nice,” and walk away. Or, another reaction might be to pretend we did not hear anything at all, and edge in the other direction. Perhaps the day has been particularly bad, and we blurt out, “Look, you can be anything you want as long as it’s not in my way!” Well, hopefully not that one, or the others.
What did Jesus expect when he told the Pharisee’s that he was the “Light of the world?” As usual, he was using the surrounding circumstances to make a point. He was in the temple with candles burning to represent the pillar of fire that led the Israelites through the desert. The fire, the light, represented God’s protection, presence, and guidance to His people. Now, did the Pharisees believe him? How many times have we heard this, “just because you say its true doesn’t make it true?” That was their response.
Jesus, knowing that his words would be remembered, and that He was speaking to a wider audience than the Pharisees — well, us — said this: “I know where I came from and I know where I am going.” Jesus believed in who He was, and who his Father was, and said, “I stand with the Father who sent me.”
God sent Jesus to be the light of the world, our light, in our world, now. Jesus is our protection, our presence, and our guidance in the world; then, today, tomorrow, the next day, and the day after that. God never changes. God sent Jesus as our example of what to be, what to do, and as a path to Him.
During this Christmastime, let us remember who we are. Let us accept where we came from and where we are going. Let us follow in Jesus’ path, to Him, and for Him. Each time we look at the Christmas lights and Christmas candles, let them remind us who we are. We are His light in the world. Jesus knew his saying, “I am the light of the world” would challenge the Pharisees. And so, too, it challenges us.
The next time we run into a stranger, and they say something strange, let us honestly and sincerely consider their words and remember who we are. We stand with the Father.