“In the tender compassion of our God the dawn from on high shall break upon us, to shine on those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death, and to guide our feet into the way of peace” – Luke 1:78-79
Light is an integral part of our Advent and Christmas seasons. We light the candles of our Advent wreath, we decorate our trees, homes, and yards with a variety of bright lights, and we recall the Star of Bethlehem shining brightly over the place where Jesus was born. On this eve of Christmas, let us pause and reflect on our Advent journey, a journey focused on preparing our hearts for the birth of Jesus, the light of the world.
For me, light is a symbol of God’s love – it can shine upon us as well as emanate from us. God calls us to be light to the world. According to St. Mother Teresa of Calcutta, “There is a light in this world, a healing spirit more powerful than any darkness we may encounter.” Our faith journey allows us to find this light inside of ourselves and others. This light is essential “to guide our feet into the way of peace.” As Pope Francis noted, “Faith is not a light which scatters all our darkness, but a lamp which guides our steps in the night and suffices for the journey.”
As we bring closure to our Advent journey and look forward to the birth of Jesus, let us take a moment to pause and reflect:
- How have I prepared my heart this advent season to be a unique expression of God’s love?
- How is my faith illuminating my path as well as the path of others?
- How can I share my light so others can emerge from whatever their moments of “darkness” may be?
- How do I model God’s care and compassion to all I encounter along my journey in life?
God of light and love, bless us with the strength and courage to share our light with others. Let our faith illuminate paths that lead to promoting justice and peace. Grace us with a compassionate heart so we may be unique expressions of Your love to all those we meet along our journey.
Dr. Keith Crowley
To view the full Advent 2022 booklet in English, click here.
For Spanish, click here.
For French, click here.