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Witness to the Light!

In the military we use a lot of acronyms.  Those words that we could abbreviate and shorten whereby we could immediately communicate with using noticeably short sentences.  One word that we came to know while on maneuvers/field exercises and or in combat was LID.  I spell that phonetically, Lima India Delta (LID).  It stood for Lost In Desert!   Now, I admit that I have been misoriented lots of times but never lost.  But, with your Global Positioning System (GPS) inoperable to know your exact location in the middle of the desert, even with a compass, can become a large sink hole of “where am I”.  OK – what do you do now? 

In that vast darkness you search for a landmark of something to reorient yourself.  In the darkness, that orientation is towards the light!  A candle in the darkness can be seen 3 miles away on flat terrain in any direction! 

Another is to call Headquarters and have them pop a flare to become reoriented.  You really have an awkward feeling when you hear that bright flare go up, you have your compass ready to reorient yourself and the flare goes up in the distance – behind you.  Yup, LID is correct. 

Speaking of darkness.  Remember, in the beginning there was no light. Only darkness!  And God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light (Gn 1:3).   This light we come to think of is the light we see every day when we get up in the morning until the sun goes down and we have night.  That light, however, is the light of God!  The God of three persons, where the Holy Spirit was moving over the face of the waters (Gn 1:2).  That light that pierces the darkness is our faith, which God was able to make the light shine in the darkness by his Word and flesh, in the birth of Jesus Christ.  That light of God, revealed through Jesus at his birth, is the light of faith to those who are lost or do not know Him yet.    

At Christmas time our houses, inside/outside, are bathed in light.  This light symbolizes not only the same light that God gave to us in the beginning but also symbolizes our Lord Jesus Christ.  Jesus, the light of the World, who was born and continues to be reborn among us at this Advent Time. 

There are many among us who live in darkness.  They have become those spiritual LIDs who have drifted away from the light into the darkness or who do not yet know the light.  They are waiting.  Waiting for someone to shine the light of Christ on them and to turn their lives into experiences of joy, of wholeness and integrity. The joy of Jesus, the joy of Christmas that can only be ours to the extent that we work with Jesus to bring that joy into the lives of others.

In today’s Gospel, the Word Became Flesh.  “There was a man sent from God, whose name was John.  He came for testimony, to bear witness to the light, that all might believe through him.  He was not the light but came to bear witness to the light” (Jn 1:6-8). 

Jesus Christ, to be born this and every Christmas is the light!  The light of the world and the true light that pierces the darkness of sin and illuminates (pops a flare) that leads us out of darkness and toward salvation. 

What better time to awaken our Sacrament of Baptism, where we became enlightened and received the light of Christ.  An enlightenment that allows all of us to see through the eyes of our faith and become a light of the world by serving, assisting, and helping those as a beacon of God’s love. 

Blessings – Dcn Jim