1 Arise, shine; for your light has come,
and the glory of the LORD has risen upon you.
2 For darkness shall cover the earth,
and thick darkness the peoples;
but the LORD will arise upon you,
and his glory will appear over you.
3 Nations shall come to your light,
and kings to the brightness of your dawn.
4 Lift up your eyes and look around;
they all gather together, they come to you;
your sons shall come from far away,
and your daughters shall be carried on their nurses’ arms.
5 Then you shall see and be radiant;
your heart shall thrill and rejoice,
because the abundance of the sea shall be brought to you,
the wealth of the nations shall come to you.
6 A multitude of camels shall cover you,
the young camels of Midian and Ephah;
all those from Sheba shall come.
They shall bring gold and frankincense,
and shall proclaim the praise of the LORD.
-Isaiah 60:1-6, NRSV
In our house, Alexa is in charge of all the lights.
If I’m perfectly honest, I’m more of an “unplugged” kind of person… but I married a tech-savvy early adopter, which means our entire house is Amazon Alexa-dependent. Alexa, turn on kitchen lights. Alexa, turn on Christmas tree. Alexa, turn living room lights to 50%.
But Alexa doesn’t always work for me. (I know she’s a robot and it’s impossible for her to play favorites — but I swear, church, she listens to my husband more than she listens to me.) Sometimes I’ll stand in a darkened room and repeatedly implore Alexa (with increasing frustration) to turn on the lights… and yet the light remains dark and the room remains dim.
Epiphany in COVID-tide feels a bit like that, I think. That’s what today is, after all: the Day of Epiphany, the day when we celebrate those Magi from far-off lands who followed the light of the star all the way to Bethlehem, to Jesus. The light of the star filled their darkness, guiding them and illuminating them.
This year, on this Epiphany, we still find ourselves in the midst of some pervasive darkness.
This year, on this Epiphany, we may find ourselves frustrated by seeming lack of spirit-lifting light.
This year, on this Epiphany, it may be a little harder to perceive the light that shines in our darkness.
Yet it still shines, friends. Like a star that may be temporarily obscured by a cover of clouds, the star still remains. We can glimpse it in the break of the clouds, and trust in it when the clouds won’t relent. (And maybe, with a few more years of research and development, we can say: Alexa, move the clouds. Alexa, show us the Light of the World.)
So on this Epiphany — yes, even this Epiphany — arise and shine, for your light has come.
And remember, friends:
Our God is bigger than coronavirus.
Our vision is bigger than coronavirus, too.
We are people blessing people.
We are Wesley Church.
Want to know more?
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- View previous devotionals: https://wesleychurch.com/pastor-candys-devotionals-2/