Almighty God, give us grace to cast away the works of darkness, and put on the armor of light, now in the time of this mortal life in which your Son Jesus Christ came to visit us in great humility; that in the last day, when he shall come again in his glorious majesty to judge both the living and the dead, we may rise to the life immortal; through him who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
From the Book of Common Prayer, 1979
The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined.
Isaiah 9:2 (King James Version)
Believe me folks, it’s dark in here-darker than the darkest darkroom. If you were to look at all that’s happening today, you would agree it’s dark. We have corruption at every level of government-here in the US of A and abroad. People’s livelihoods are being destroyed by corporate greed. Our Evangelical leaders have forsaken the Gospel for personal and political gain. There’s a collective malaise creeping over the land despite the Madison Avenue exhortation to indulge this Holiday Season.
Tonight’s first text was the Collect for the First Sunday in Advent (yesterday); the prayer offered up in worship service. It’s a prayer that applies today in our current situation. It’s time to cast away the “works of darkness” and take on the “armor of light”. It’s a prayer of preparation for us as we await the coming Christ. Although, the prayer refers to the Second Coming, I believe it has more relevance in Advent-the First Coming…
… And ties into the second text. This verse is a promise of future enlightenment, enlightenment that comes with the Christ; the Gospel He brings with him.
As we look forward to the coming of the Christ, we need to cast off the works of darkness: greed; prejudice; predatory behavior; and others. We must ready ourselves to be enlightened by the Gospel of God’s Christ. This enlightenment will allow us to reign with Christ-right here, right now; not in some future time. And when we reign with the Christ, we will cast the works of darkness away and usher in the Queen/Kingdom of God into our world.
Let’s take this Advent time to pray and mediate upon these words so we can come out of the darkness.
Peace and light to all.
(Image by Me).