Wednesday, December 17, 2008
What do you know of Light?
There is never another day when you will get to see the light for the first time. To be born again--not only an apt description of the moment you first see God, it's the only one. Imagine the battle taken from dark places, a struggle ensues, a push, a gasp, a wail--your body, your head misshapen. Everything about where you were seems so warm, so right and yet for some reason you feel compelled to burst forth and all the while the blood and sweat and cries of the one who gave you birth covers you from head to toe. Lux Aurumque--turn on the light in your own home and your satisfied and glad for it. You take your steps, retrieve this or that, move through your home...it's been only moments and you've forgotten the light.
But to be born again is to know that even if you had ever seen the light before, the place you were was so dark, so heavy, so...internal, as to have forgotten light existed. The relief...the joy that comes from even a sliver leaves one feeling foreign but adopted, resplendent yet dumb-founded, like hearing a language without voice and completely unfamiliar as to never gain understanding. Like being stripped naked without feeling sacrificed but completely borne. A light not only overwhelming, but absolutely stunning--stunned into silence--stunned into such an awe-filled existence as to never again express the first day you saw light.
Let me tell you something. I've a Christmas story I'll tell you each and every year until you hear my voice. You may not believe the Christmas story, I understand that. But if you hear it told, I want you to know the full story.
You already know the story in Luke 2. A Census was called and Mary and her Husband, both descendents of King David left for Bethlehem to be counted. Mary, a virgin, was pregnant by the power of the Holy Spirit. They entered Bethlehem where the Son of God was born. Hosts of Angels visited Shepherds in the night and announced the birth. Folklore tell us that a sweet Choir of happy angels visited the Shepherds and while the Shepherds lay face down on the ground the Angels enjoyed a little sing-a-long. Fat baby angel swirling around the sky firing rubber "joy" arrows at the Shepherds.
Until you read the story told in Revelation 12. Satan, a mighty dragon waited at the doorstep of the birth so that he might kill the Christ. But God's Angels were there and they swooped Him up to Heaven while his mother fled to safety in the desert. A mighty war ensued in the heavens...a battle greater than all wars in time and space put together. Michael and his soldiers, God's Army, commanded to surround God's son at his birth and take him to his Father in Heaven. He would not be devoured by Satan under any circumstances. The one task complete, God turned towards Satan and directed His army at them. They swooped into the battlefield with such fury as to shake the heavens and God's army conquered the Devil's army with might and surety. Satan and the other angels were all hurled to earth--the place where Satan himself tried to murder the mother of the Christ. When she escaped Satan vowed to reek havoc on her offspring, namely those who are adopted children of Light...those who know God...and those who, as with His son, shall never be taken. Yet Satan vows to bring you misery and hopes to take you to such dark places where even your own fingers float into memory.
Luke 2 says that a host of angels appeared before the Shepherds and that they were very much afraid. If Angels, weapons gleaming, armed to the teeth, appeared before you, would you not fall prostrate? DO YOU HEAR ME? They asked. "Do not fear", they said, "We mean you no harm."
"Glory to God in the Highest" they said. It's like the confident cry of the United States Marines..."Hoo-rahh" they say, Semper Fi. A group of men and women so ardently in love with their country, so beholden to their task, patriotic to the bone...hoo-rahh. Take that times a million, maybe more. A race of Angels persistently, joyfully and without a second thought lift their voices in the most joyful, fierce, loyal, proud, yet humble cry of any age up until this very day. Listen...I said LISTEN--"GLORY TO GOD IN THE HIGHEST AND ON EARTH PEACE ON WHOM HIS FAVOR RESTS!" Angels, battle hardened angels, honed their skills, ripped their muscles and sharpened their tools--hoo-rahh, Glory to God in the Highest, Hoo-rahh. The greatest war of any time and space would occur..."DO YOU HEAR ME?" They would knock Satan's guts straight out his back...
And we have them "Sweetly singing oe'r the plain." No. Absurd. NO! NO! A host is an army and by all that lives and breathes an eternal war raged amongst beings whose strength we could never comprehend, acting as a language no man could even recognize as such, and even so, scripture says that they were sent to serve us.
Sweetly singing. Comical. Cute. But untrue.
Some of you might not believe the story told in Scripture. In my opinion Santa's harder to believe than the story of the birth of Christ God's Son. But even then, should you hear the story of Christ's birth told this year, keep in mind that, at least for me, I'm glad the full Angelic power showed up that night. Ripped, ironclad Hosts drew their most powerful weapons and witnessed God's son enter Earth. I would've fallen over too.
What do you know of light?
I'll tell the story again next year.