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Loving baby, loving Jesus

Friday, December 29, 2006

1 John 2:8-11
Dear friends, the darkness is passing and the true light is already shining.

Anyone who claims to be in the light but hates his brother is still in the darkness. Whoever loves his brother lives in the light, and there is nothing in him to make him stumble. But whoever hates his brother is in the darkness and walks around in the darkness; he does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded him.

Divide the world into two groups; those who love others, and those who only love themselves. Match them one to one, and build families, cities, countries. Most of the world looks just like this.

And John wants us all to be the lovers. The lovers-of-themselves are certainly not happy. Who wants to stumble around in darkness? Only someone who has no idea what it's like to live in light.

Darkness is a place where secrets grow into sins. Darkness is a breeding ground for shame and denial. Darkness is a place to hide, to pretend, to forget, to ignore, to close my eyes and pretend nobody can see me.

But the light blinds me. I am afraid to be seen. There is nothing about me that is lovely to look at, nothing honorable, nothing worthy. I stinketh, as the girls said about Lazarus.

So John's letter resounds in praise of Jesus, who not only brings the light but shows us how to enter into it. His message is not new, but his enabling makes all things new. As he raised Lazarus, so he raises us all. By loving us he teaches us how to love. We can all be lovers. Jesus leads the way.

When I bow my head, Lord, I bow to you, not in shame but with joy and thanksgiving. Your humbling makes me whole.

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