The following is a post I wrote this morning on my blog: www.cynthialottvogel.blo
New Living Translation (NLT)
78 Because of God’s tender mercy,
the morning light from heaven is about to break upon us,
79 to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death,
and to guide us to the path of peace.”
How is it that these verses, the words of Zechariah at the birth of his son John (the Baptist), have escaped my notice these 51 years? I was this morning looking at the Blue Letter Bible's list of Scriptures related to the Incarnation (the birth of Jesus, Y'shua, our salvation, and his birth on earth) and these verses caught my eye as if they were written in neon lights.
The reason I was looking at this list of Scriptures is because Christmas is coming on Wednesday--and I almost wish it wouldn't. I feel - instead of "peace on earth, good will toward men" a great sadness and heaviness of heart. This is not as it should be....even if we see the shadow of the cross on the manger that evening in Bethlehem....we should still rejoice at the salvation that both the manger and the cross were to bring to us...to me. I decided to spend this day - the Monday before Christmas- in prayer and in reading hoping to find some of the joy this holiday merits.
I just want to read and re-read these two verses...lavishing them on my mind, rekindling my sad spirit and reaching my heart out to Jesus--to capture some of that morning light from heaven and to tell him, "Here I am. I sit in darkness awaiting the light. I am in the shadows of death and I greatly need your peace. Pour out your light and mercy on me, restore to me the joy of my salvation...the salvation that was born in a manger and died on a cross and ROSE again, buying once and for all : Joy. Peace. and the display of God's good will toward men in the form of his son: the babe. The man. The God. the Emmanuel--GOD WITH US. God with me: here in this chair, listening to the cars splashing through the rain puddles. With a heart that cries out for this light, who needs to find the pathway to Peace. He is the Prince of Peace. The way to peace finds its ending in Him. He is the culmination of my sad searching.
Bathe me in heaven's Light, oh Yahweh.---Reveal to me the joy that you bought for me....at such a great price.
Thank you Lord for these verses....may they bring peace and joy and relief to others who suffer this Christmas