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Friday, January 9, 2015

Today’s Reading | John 1:1–18

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being. What has come into being in him was life, and the life was the light of all people. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.

There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. He came as a witness to testify to the light, so that all might believe through him. He himself was not the light, but he came to testify to the light. The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world.

He was in the world, and the world came into being through him; yet the world did not know him. He came to what was his own, and his own people did not accept him. But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God, who were born, not of blood or of the will of the flesh or of the will of man, but of God.

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. (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.’”) From his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace. The law indeed was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. No one has ever seen God. It is God the only Son, who is close to the Father’s heart, who has made him known. (NRSV)

In the chancel of the Fourth Presbyterian Church sanctuary, there is a beautiful stained-glass window above the organ console, the Great West Window. At the bottom of the center panel is a depiction of John the Baptist pointing upward toward Christ.

That particular panel has special significance for me each time I sit directly below it to play the organ. It is a reminder to me that my role as a musician is to lead other people in glorifying and worshiping God. Like John the Baptist, I, too, am pointing toward Christ.

Being a musician has been the primary way I have lived my call as a Christian, but over time I have extended that calling into all facets of my life, not just when I am making music in the sanctuary, but when I am taking care of my family, talking with strangers, or reading newspaper accounts of people far away.

We are each called to point to Christ with all our being, with all our life energy, in every moment. At times it may seem easy, but at others it can be very challenging. It takes a great deal of effort to truly point to Christ, yet the rewards of living out this calling become more apparent with every passing day.

O Christ, help me focus on you, believe in you, and point to you with my words, my actions, and my life, so that others may know your love, your joy, and your peace. Amen.

Written by John W. W. Sherer, Organist and Director of Music

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