Advent – Preparing for the Coming King (Day 15)

Day 15 –The Word Became Flesh – John 1:1-18

1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was with God in the beginning. 3 Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. 4 In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. 5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

6 There was a man sent from God whose name was John. 7 He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all might believe. 8 He himself was not the light; he came only as a witness to the light.

9 The true light that gives light to everyone was coming into the world. 10 He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. 11 He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. 12 Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God—13 children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.

14 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

15 (John testified concerning him. He cried out, saying, “This is the one I spoke about when I said, ‘He who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before me.’ ”) 16 Out of his fullness we have all received grace in place of grace already given. 17 For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has ever seen God, but the one and only Son, who is himself God and is in closest relationship with the Father, has made him known.

We live in a dark world.

Sometimes this darkness is thrown in our faces, such as happened yesterday with the massacre in Connecticut.  Other times we manage to move through life, ignoring the darkness because it seems so far away.  Every day thousands of men, women and children are killed in war zones, are raped, starve to death, die of preventable diseases and suffer in horrific ways I cannot even imagine.  Then it happens a bit closer to home and I am reminded that the darkness is real.

Lots of things play a part in creating this dark world: emotional diseases, desire for power, weapons that kill, the glorification of violence in everything from movies to sports to video games.  All of these things, and others, help the darkness grow.  None of them is solely responsible.  The simple fact is that we live in a dark world.

The hope of Christmas is that there is a light that shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it.  Hard as it may be to believe it on a day like today, the light shines.  There is hope for this dark world, found in a baby born in a manger.  There is hope for this dark world in the dream of Jesus Christ, who laid down his life, suffering alongside all innocent people, to demonstrate that there is a better way to live.

May we catch the vision of Jesus, become people of light and push the darkness back.

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