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The Dual Grace of Light


Dear Kaleid Ladies,


Good morning! Peace to you and yours today!

We’re going to enjoy a few more weeks considering the qualities of light together. This Epiphany season, we are taking time to ponder Jesus as the light of the world and to consider our opportunity to be the same. We are asking a question: How can considering light lead us to think about the nature of God in Christ and about our way of being in the world as those who reflect Jesus to our neighbors?

Reflection on Light

This week, we’re talking about a tension of grace inherent in light: light yields both shadows and color. Light does a work of beauty, allowing our eyes to perceive color. At the same time, it does an often-chilling work of contrast, casting shadows on our paths.

There is a tension of grace in the work of light.

Can you recall the contrast between the welcome warmth of places where sunlight falls unobstructed along our way and the suddenly chilly spots where shadows are long? We all know the feeling of walking outdoors, basking in radiant warmth only to wrap our arms tightly around ourselves a few steps later because we have crossed into the shadows. Where there are big things along the way in our landscape, the chill of heavy shadows alerts us to their presence.

Light is gracious. It yields to the substance of the objects in its way. Shadows result. Life’s shadows can be a grace, too, especially when they help us to notice what looms in our internal landscape.

Color is another grace of light. While we may notice light itself as we squint against bright reflections or appreciate the clarity of a truly cloudless day, we rarely observe color and think, “Oh, thank you, light!” We deeply appreciate the colorful effects of light on display in nature, where each season brings different palettes, or in our homes, where colors combine to offer something warm and hopeful to those who enter. But without light, we would not see yellow flowers, or ochre leaves, or chartreuse frogs in nature. We would not see soft blue paint or crisp white sheets or the deep brown swirl of wood in our homes. Light is the grace that offers us a nearly infinite range of possibilities for beauty.

No two lives are alike. We know this, but how often do we stop to appreciate how God’s light in God’s people illuminates the world in such varied, unique, and beautiful ways? Your life is a fantastic riot of color in the world that looks like nothing else in creation. And this is also the grace of light.

Some Light Prompts for You

Consider the grace of shadows today. Notice them as you move through your day. Where are they? What do they reveal? Notice where there are dark or chilly places in the landscape of your life. What do your shadowy places reveal? How might God be inviting you to interact with the shadows and those things which cast them in your life today? Allow God to speak a gracious light-blessing over your heart about the darkness or chill that your shadows are showing you.

Consider the grace of color today. Stop a few times today to take note of the colors around you. Notice their variety and notice how the light plays with the colors in your world as they day progresses. Could you name the colors of the life of God that are active in your life right now? What about your own colorful life and its expression in the world…what colors does your life add to the small patch of land you inhabit with family and neighbors? Allow God to tell you of the beauty of His life around you and your life in the world.

Matthew 5:14-16

“Here’s another way to put it: You’re here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. We’re going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. If I make you light-bearers, you don’t think I’m going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I’m putting you on a light stand. Now that I’ve put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you’ll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven.”

Whether you notice color or shadow this day, you are loved.

Gratefully,

The Kaleid Team



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