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)
As the young, new, city-bred teacher in the small local school, living with one family and getting to know the others whose children were now my pupils, I readily accepted the invitation to dinner from the neighbouring farming family. Sunshine filled the late afternoon sky as I set out on foot for the short walk from one home to the other. The track ran a short distance along a gravelled farm roadway, climbed through a fence, across a grassed paddock where cattle grazed, then went through the boundary fence and followed a gravelled farm road to the neighbouring house.
After a pleasant meal, the time arrived for me to return home. What a difference a few hours had made! As I went outside, the darkness enveloped me. Stars shone brilliantly in the night sky, but cast little light on the pathway. Even my youthful vision could not distinguish the edge of the roadway. Eventually, I reached the boundary fence and clambered through into the grassed paddock. After several changes of direction, I reached the home fence, and once through it, was back on the gravelled road to home. How wonderful to enter the well-lit homestead where there was light instead of darkness!
Even more wonderful, in the midst of the dark experiences of life, is the light of life — Jesus. He is the light of the world, and when we follow Him, we walk in the light, and the darkness is dispelled.
Bernard Barton no doubt had such a thought in mind as he penned these words in 1826:
- Walk in the light: and you shall own
Your darkness passed away,
Because that light on you has shone
In which is perfect day.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, You are the light of the world, dispelling the darkness of sin and sorrow. Build us into people of faith who trust You, so that when the dark periods of life come upon us, we may walk with You in the light of life. Amen.