August 30, 2019
Scripture: 1st John 1:5-6
This is the message that we have heard from him and announce to you: “God is light and there is no darkness in him at all.” If we claim, “We have fellowship with him,” and live in the darkness, we are lying and do not act truthfully.
Thought for the Day: Elisabeth Kübler-Ross provided many great insights around death and dying, but she is best known for articulating the five stages of grief. I don’t know how many times I have borrowed her ideas to provide context to someone’s emotional pain. A number of years ago, I found a quote from Kübler-Ross that I found both helpful and profound. She wrote:
People are like stained-glass windows. They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is a light from within.
When we read about the importance of fellowship in 1st John, it is more than having potluck dinners together. The Greek word we translate as fellowship is koinonia, and there are times when koinonia was used as a euphemism for a sexual encounter. That’s not what 1st John is suggesting here, but knowing that information provides us insight into the depth of meaning this word carried. So when we read about fellowship or lack there of, the author wants us to understand that divine light isn’t to simply shine upon us, but is to dwell within us. Too often in life, something painful happens and it obstructs the light…leaving us in the shadows of despair. But if we have fellowship with God, the light dwells within us and nothing can impede the light.
Prayer: It is a daily practice, O Source of Light, for me to make sure there is space for you to dwell. I collect a lot of unnecessary junk along the way, crowding out what is important and life-giving. Though it is fall, let me do a little spring cleaning — taking out bitterness, envy, hate, guilt and anything else that is not of you. Let me do more than set them aside, but through your merciful kindness, I shall seek the strength to truly dispose of them for good. This is not something I can do on my own, so give me some faithful friends who will work alongside your gracious Spirit. This I request in the name of Jesus. Amen.
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Rev. Bruce Frogge