Light of the world, shining in darkness,
Light of the world, dwelling among us,
Light of the world, guiding your people,
Light of the world, freeing the captive,
Light of the world, offering blessing,
Light of the world, reflecting God’s glory,
Open our eyes to bathe in your light.
No one remembers you when he is dead. Who praises you from the grave? (Psalm 6:5)
“When I die I will simply fade into the darkness and no-one will remember me” (Covid patient February 2021)
Jesus said “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” (John 8:12)
Its been a difficult 18 months; I’ve been present at so many people’s deaths. Some directly attributable to Covid and some not. The people I’ve met haven’t just been from the congregations within our partnership, many have had little connection with a church but have called out to the church in their final hours. And then there are those who are like the ancient Israelites: they didn’t have any real hope in resurrection and everlasting life. They believed that when someone died, the soul went to a place of shadows and, over time, it became a mere shadow itself. Death was something to be dreaded and feared. It meant the end of everything – life, relationships, and faith. Psalm 6 is truly a bleak and baron reflection on this.
Thankfully, we are New Testament people and the good news of the Gospel means that death does not have the final word. Christ’s victory over sin and death has opened up a door between us and God. Instead of going to the land of shadows when we die, we are welcomed into the Kingdom of Light. Rather than losing our relationships, we are restored to God.
These blessings come to us through Jesus. There is no other way. He is the conduit of God’s everlasting compassion; he is the sole channel of God’s eternal grace. When we fully give our hearts to him and place our souls into Christ’s hands, we are assured of these wonderful gifts and death no longer has any power to diminish us or our souls. Not only will we remember and praise God from the grave, we will be restored to rejoice with him forever.
For light to guide and light to reveal hidden things, thanks be to God
For light composed of many colours, thanks be to God.
For bright light that throws strong shadows and gentle light that caresses, thanks be to God.
For the inner light of people who cannot see light, thanks be to God.
For the light that points us to greater light, thanks be to God.
For Jesus, light of the world and light in all light, here portrayed before us,
thanks be to God.
Jesus, light of the world,
your light heals us,
shining into every corner of our being,
exposing the lies we have told ourselves
and the lies that have been told to us.
Thank you for your truth that sets us free.
Jesus, light of the world,
shine in the world you came to save,
show us the truth about your plan for humanity,
and enable us to set our feet on the paths that lead to peace,
so that all your people may be free.
This little light of mine https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QCN893hzueQ
Death May Approach https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x8CPC2Jf-Rk
The Spirit Lives to Set Us Free