By Fr. Alex Radulescu - Today, we read from the Book of Isaiah 49:6
“Thus says the LORD: ‘I will give you as a light to the nations, that my salvation may reach to the end of the earth.’"
These words are originally addressed to the people of Israel and, by extension, to the new people of God, the Christians. This calling is also echoed by Christ Himself during His sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5:14,16) when He said:
“You are the light of the world. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.”
We all have a purpose in this world: to reflect the light of our Creator and become beacons of light to all the people. Unfortunately, this world we live in is tainted by sin and there is a lot of darkness out there. We have a responsibility to share the Light of Christ, to share His message of hope, to act with love, to imitate His life of holiness.
But where is the light coming from? Christ was the first spark. He was sent into our dark world to bring the hope of our salvation (read John 1:6-9). We all receive His Light at our Baptism (by the way, this is why we wear white at that service). And we are called to share that light with all the people, to share Christ’s message of hope, the Gospel of His love.
A while ago, I made this experiment with the kids during HOPE and JOY classes: the teachers closed the blinds and I lit a candle and put it under the table. I asked the kids if I did the right thing. They all started laughing and called my action silly. “We can’t see, Fr. Alex! Bring the candle up!” So, I obliged. Then, we gave them all a candle. I approached each one of them and shared my light with them. The more candles lit, the brighter the room became.
And then I made my point: this is an example of how we need to share our Christian faith with others. I also made two observations about the light: 1) when we sharing our light, our candle does not diminish its brightness – all get the same light without loss; 2) the more people get the light, the brighter and warmer it gets in the room – the more people believe in Christ and imitate His life, the better this world becomes.
The kids quickly took notice that when it gets dark, we need light. And when we get the light, we bring it up high, so everyone can see what they are doing, otherwise its purpose is lost. Spiritually speaking, this is exactly what God wants from us: to share His light with the world.
Friends, during this time when so many people suffer and are worried, Christians are called more than ever to share Christ’s light by acting with love and compassion, by being generous, by bringing comfort and joy to all people.
If you know someone who needs encouragement, call them. If someone in your family is talking about doom, uplift them with the comforting words of the Lord. If a co-worker, a friend, or anybody else needs you support, offer it with patience and love.
There are many ways in which we can “shine” our Christian light into the world. Let us remember that this is our duty, our calling. If we got the light, let us share it! Amen.