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Lenten Devotions from Fourth Presbyterian Church

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Today’s Scripture Reading | Isaiah 62:1–5

For Zion’s sake I will not keep silent,
   and for Jerusalem’s sake I will not rest,
until her vindication shines out like the dawn,
   and her salvation like a burning torch.
The nations shall see your vindication,
   and all the kings your glory;
and you shall be called by a new name
   that the mouth of the Lord will give.
You shall be a crown of beauty in the hand of the Lord,
   and a royal diadem in the hand of your God.
You shall no more be termed Forsaken,
   and your land shall no more be termed Desolate;
but you shall be called My Delight Is in Her,
   and your land Married;
for the Lord delights in you,
   and your land shall be married.
For as a young man marries a young woman,
   so shall your builder marry you,
and as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride,
   so shall your God rejoice over you. (NRSV)

This passage is full of beautiful imagery, but I find myself most drawn to the images of light, of the vindication that “shines out like the dawn” and the salvation that is like a “burning torch.” While these are both beautiful descriptions of light, their essence is very different. The soft, pink light breaking over the horizon to welcome a new day evokes a feeling much different than the bright yellows and oranges of a blazing torch leading the way through a dark night. And I am grateful for both.

We all have light to shine into the world, but it is not the same light. Each person has their own light to shine. And not everyone will see the beauty of a particular light. Some will think it’s too bright or too soft. Some will think it’s the wrong color or that it shines at the wrong time. No matter. Keep shining. Your light is not diminished when you share it. When you use a candle to light another, the flame from your candle continues to burn just as bright.

How do you let your light shine?

Light of the World, thank you for bestowing your light upon us and trusting us to carry it into the world. Give us the courage we need to shine your light into dark places in our own lives, our families, our communities, and the world. Remind us that light is more powerful than darkness and that the light of your love shines through us every day in our words and deeds. Challenge us not to be selfish and keep it to ourselves; show us ways to share it with those who need it most. Amen.

Written by Nicole Spirgen, Member of Fourth Presbyterian Church

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