Reflections on in the midst of . . dark and light

During this Lenten series, in the midst of . . . dark and light, we have been examining the ways we experience dark and light.  Not only have we been using the sermons, but we have read books, sang hymns, and viewed dark/light through liturgy, art and poetry. Each of us sees the benefits and challenges of dark and light through different eyes. I have asked the other clergy and a few members to reflect on what this series has meant to them before we enter Palm Sunday and Holy Week.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                ~Eldonna Hazen

I appreciated exploring the negative side of light (too much, too long, too exhausting, or too much information) and the positive side of dark. I was amazed at how difficult it is to escape language that makes light positive and dark negative. But it was new perspectives on dark that taught me most: dark where creation began and each new life begins; dark where we rest, restore, and even re-order ourselves; dark where we encounter in our own consciousness dimensions we ignore or suppress in daily life and work.                                                                                                                                                                                                 ~Mary Metz

The Lenten series has reminded me that in the dark I can see the heavens that show the enormous power and creativity of God. The sunlight shows me the love and fellowship of others who reflect God. I need both to feel both humbled and loved by God, and the series has reminded me of these different aspects of our relationships to God and each other. I have truly enjoyed this difficult effort by our preaching staff to share themselves and their thoughts on the fundamental differences and advantages.                                                                                                                                                                                                     ~Jim Taylor

I’ve appreciated the many opportunities we’ve had to reflect on dark and light, through sermons, liturgy, art, music, and book studies. I’m now thinking much more about our need for both dark and light; especially the growth and rejuvenation that happens in the dark. The series brought to my attention Jesus’ birth and resurrection in the darkness of a cave, and the importance of Jesus’ prayer times in the dark wilderness.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 ~Sue Jones

Western culture’s emphasis on light as good and dark as bad was very strong and seemed natural in my mind so it has been both very interesting and liberating to become mindful of that emphasis and all the metaphors in faith, literature and popular culture that support it. After recognizing that bias for the first time, I was then surprised to learn of the many Biblical images of God in darkness. Although we missed the Sunday morning book discussions, I also enjoyed reading both books and Learning to Walk in the Dark reminded me that I, personally, do not find the dark very scary – my fear is more of a blazing desert sun from which there is no escape.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     ~Paul Karch

I am grateful to the staff for their thoughtful meditations on scripture seen through the lens of dark and light. Hearing the sermons and reading the books made me more conscious of light/dark images in language and led me to make better use of the times in the middle of the night when I wake up and can’t immediately fall back to sleep. Instead of getting up to work on the computer or read a book, I have been engaging with the blessed darkness.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           ~Mari McCarty

I think most of us assume, because of the tradition of Easter sunrise services,  that the disciples came to the empty tomb in the light. That is the version of the story in the Gospel of Mark but in the Gospel of John, the Easter story begins in the dark. Both stories are equally authoritative. Both are equally believable. The authors of the Gospels are telling us that there are often two different versions of the same truth. We can find the resurrected Jesus in either the light or the dark.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                ~Jerry Hancock

I have especially appreciated what I have learned about the value of the dark.  I have been reminded not only of how much good happens in the dark, but also how I can use my resistance of the dark to teach me what I am afraid of.  It is my hope and prayer that as we better understand what we resist and embrace about light and dark, that we will be able to embrace all of the goodness that God created with light and dark.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            ~Ann Beaty

 

Posted on March 24, 2015 at 10:17 am in Featured Content.

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