The theme of the 2018 Churchwide Gathering of Presbyterian Women is “Arise, shine, your light has come!” Inspired by this bold (and illuminating!) theme, Gathering planners are writing reflections on light. Be sure to sign up for Gathering emails so you’ll receive future reflections when they’re sent on the 30th of every month.
Feel free to share this reflection at your next PW meeting and encourage other women to join you at the Gathering!
Seeing (and Being) a Great Light
By Pam Snyder, Mission Partners chair for the 2018 Churchwide Gathering of Presbyterian Women (and former vice moderator for mission relationships, Churchwide Coordinating Team)
It is a new year and I, like many, have been thinking about what I should do differently in the year ahead. My list of ideas includes many of the usual practices—eat healthier, exercise more, declutter my home, etc. But it is also a good time to step back and explore how I can be healthier in my spiritual life and consider whether I am resolving to be all that God needs from me this year.
This brings me to the light theme. Leading up to Christmas, we experienced the darker, shorter days of December. But we are beginning to see the days lengthen and we are experiencing a little more light each day. One of our recent cantata pieces included the words “the people who walked in darkness have seen a great light.” Isaiah reminds us that God’s light will break through the gloom and darkness. Isaiah is able to imagine and to describe a great light breaking, illuminating the path for those who walk in darkness, fear and pain. I think of those who suffer from seasonal affective disorder and how dark it must feel for them during the winter months. Isaiah promises that God’s people will be given a light by which to see and walk. He also reminds us that God intends for those on whom God’s light shines to be themselves a gift, “a light to the nations.”
As Christians we are called to share the light we can see and feel. Jesus told us we are to be the light of the world. My goal for this New Year is to strive to let God’s light shine through me. I’ll embrace the beauty of each morning’s sunrise, open the blinds and let God’s light in. I will be still and rest in the light of God, letting that light fill my heart. Then I will strive to be a walking lightbulb for Christ.
Arise, shine, your light has come!