Updated: Mar 19, 2020
Light | Reader – Easter 2020
Silence and stillness before God (2 minutes)
Reading: Genesis 1:1-3
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. (NIV)
Here’s the truth: God is with us. He is with us right now. In uncertainty, in unprecedented times, and in times where all is well. His nature is to be present at all times. A few years ago I heard a brother by the name of John Stumbo speak. He had just come out of a very dark season of His life. In 2008, he was struck with a mysterious disease that robbed his muscles of their strength and kept him from being able to swallow. Many times the doctors told his wife Joanna that he wouldn’t make it.
John had been healthy all of his life. He ran marathons and ultramarathons, hiked and played tennis. This disease came and disrupted his life out of nowhere, much like the COVID-19 pandemic the world is experiencing today. During that time John learned what he shared that day with a group of us in Pennsylvania, that “God was not just the God of the light, but that He was God over darkness too…ever before there was light, God was there.” God is God over all. It took John almost 2 years to recover. The doctors were so perplexed by his illness that they said that they would have to call the disease, “John Stumbo syndrome.” Almost as mysteriously as it came, the disease went away. But what he learned in that season impacted him and now thousands of others forever.
Light is needed because darkness is present. Darkness does not rule the day, God does. God is with us. Nothing has ever been able to bring the Church to a halt—not fear, not sickness, persecution, hunger or war. We are called to trust in the Father of lights (James 1:17) and called to be light to a dark world (Matthew 5:14-16). Light does its best work in the darkness and we are believing that if we seek God in this hour we will hear His voice of love and from there be able to join Him in being present with those around us in ways that will bring Him glory and fruit that will last.
Question to consider this week: How can I be light in my community and circles of influence this week?
Weekly action step: Go outside and pray in your neighborhood with your eyes open and ask God to give you tangible ways to be light to your neighbors. Consider texting one or two of your neighbors and people in your circles of influence, making yourself available to them during this season.
Prayer: Lord, you are God over light, but you are God over darkness too. Help me to trust you even when I am disoriented and confused, and help me to join you in bringing hope to a world that needs it. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Conclude with silence (2 minutes)