Paul uses the imagery of darkness versus light, so central to the
Gospel of John, to help the Ephesians understand the contrast between
their old life and, now, their new life in Christ. I love the line,
“Find out what pleases the Lord.” When I visit struggling churches,
and they ask me what I think they should do, I always say, “Think
about what would make God happy. Then do that!” That’s pretty good
advice for life.
8 For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live
as children of light 9 (for the fruit of the light consists in all
goodness, righteousness and truth) 10 and find out what pleases the
Lord. 11 Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but
rather expose them. 12 It is shameful even to mention what the
disobedient do in secret. 13 But everything exposed by the light
becomes visible—and everything that is illuminated becomes a light. 14
This is why it is said: “Wake up, sleeper, rise from the dead, and
Christ will shine on you.”
God, with you there is no darkness. Your character has no shadows, and
you are pure and good. Yet in our broken world, we see so much
darkness around us. Pain, sickness, and disease are in our community
and in many of our homes.
Bring your light and restoring presence to the dark places in our
lives. Bring your hope to hearts that feel defeated. Bring your love
and compassion to those in pain.
Give us faith to say with the psalmist, “Lord, you light my lamp; my
God illuminates my darkness.” May your light of hope shine in the
darkness for families today. Show us glimpses of your presence with us
and the comfort you bring.
In the busyness of today, help us to take a moment to be still and sit
with you. To slow down, breathe deeply, and release our burdens to
your strong hand. You are trustworthy, good, and true, and we thank
you for caring for us so deeply and beautifully. Open our eyes to see
you at work today. Give us your light.
In Jesus name, Amen.
(Mary Beth Thomas)