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A Single Light | Mary Biever | One Writing Mother

A Single Light

In the painting of Rembrandt’s student, The Adoration of the Shepherds, in the National Gallery in London, we see more of the Christmas nativity story than we realize. ┬áDarkness surrounds all those in the picture. Until we get to the light surrounding the Nativity scene.

Shepherds, straight from the fields are there with Jesus, Mary and Joseph.

There is a lantern someone tried to use to bring light to the darkness. But that light fades in comparison to that of the Christ Child.

So many of us live in worlds with darkness. They are worlds where we have been blindsided more times than we can count by disappointment and betrayal. Bad things happen. Things that aren’t fair happen. Those things hurt us, and we carry battle scars from lost battles. If I had only known the darkness, the pain, and the scars, I don’t think I could have born it.

When we, like the shepherds, open our eyes and see the Christ Child, there is a light that shines. It shows us with our flaws. Our faults and failings. And those painful scars.

The scars may remain, but with the light of Christ they are transformed into something beautiful.

I have lived my own verse of this story. As I told someone last night, the important part is that Jesus Christ took those scars, and transformed me by using them. He does make beauty from ashes.

The sorrows of the first verses of my life are now augmented by a refrain of alleluias of thanksgiving to Jesus.

This week, as we sing Oh Come, O Come Emmanuel, I invite you to gaze into the light of the Christ Child and listen to Him, so that you too can join the refrain of glorias that change everything.

Don’t get so taken with a world of darkness and pain that you miss the light of Christ.


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