Isaiah 9:2 – The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned. (NIV)
John 8:12 – When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life." (NIV)
I never understood how very real the light that radiates from Christ is until something happened one day that woke me up to the power of His healing, energizing light.
It happened years ago during an especially difficult time for me, when church, friends, family were not there for me, and I was alone. Nothing seemed to be working out, and to make matters worse, I came down with a bad infection, was hospitalized and lost my job while there.
The latter arose from a misunderstanding. A newspaper reporter had interviewed me about an upcoming seminar for church school teachers. I was misquoted, with something like, "Church school teachers called deplorable", and I was fired! All this happened while I was in hospital. Such was the support I received from my church, where I was employed.
Taking off in hurt and disgust, I travelled west with two friends, tenting all the way to the Peace River. The Board of Missions had appointed me to a position in Grande Prairie. I hoped that they at least needed me. Each morning, while on the road, we went off to find a quiet spot early for personal devotions.
One particular morning I was sitting overlooking the Missouri River from a high bluff. It was a beautiful spot. But its beauty was as nothing compared to what happened next. As I sat praying, the sun came up. Now, at that time of day the rising sun has little warmth in it, but that morning the sun warmed me through and through as from a great fire. It was a warmth that has never left me. I knew then that God's love was with me wherever I went. God's great light was guiding me, and my service for the Lord in the Peace River would be blessed by God's light in meaningful ways — a wonderful warming, loving, clarifying light. I have prayed and worked in that light ever since.
We are all invited into the light of Christ when we pray. There fears are stilled, hopes are realized, and faith strengthened.
Picture then the loved one for whom you pray being bathed in the light of Christ. For example, a person is lying sick on a hospital bed, and you enter and start praying silently, or with the patient. Then Jesus also enters the room and his coming fills the room with light, warming both of you. It is healing, loving, powerful light!
When we pray, we can see the person bathed in Christ's light; this is guaranteed to change prayers from pleading or begging to awe and thanksgiving. Christ's light illumines everything; no-one who experiences it is ever the same again. Now I am filled with hope, for in every new situation there is healing for pain, comfort for sorrow, peace for hurtful fears. Everything in us and around us changes when bathed in Christ's light. It fills both the one who prays and the one being prayed for, even at a distance!
I am praying for each of you, picturing you in the light of Christ.
Prayer: Lord, forgive our meandering around in the darkness. We see your light and are drawn to it. Illuminate our path this day. In your light we can thank you for healing power, joyful encounters and a love that overflows. All of this is way beyond our understanding, but we have seen ourselves, Lord, in your light, and kneel amazed at your acceptance and understanding. Thank you for opening our eyes to a dimension of prayer that is filled with your light, where wonderful things are happening. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.
- Eternal light! Eternal light!
How pure the soul must be
When, placed within Thy searching sight,
It shrinks not, but with calm delight
Can live, and look on Thee!
- – Thomas Binney