Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Reflection for Epiphany

Light Shining in the Darkness
By Sue Smith, PEC Treasurer and GreenFaith Fellow

Arise, shine; for your light has come, and
    the glory of the Lord has risen upon you.
For darkness shall cover the earth,
    and thick darkness the peoples;
but the Lord will arise upon you,
    and his glory will appear over you.
Nations shall come to your light,
    and kings to the brightness of your dawn. 
(Isaiah 60:1-3)

We have ended our season of expectation – the anticipation of the birth of Jesus Christ. His is the light now shining on our world. This year, as we enter this season of Epiphany, darkness is covering the earth. We continue to experience environmental degradation while the countries of the world do not negotiate a strong climate agreement. Greenhouse gases continue to be released into the air; the rivers are polluted; the seas are rising; there is drought; there are floods.

As followers of Jesus Christ, we need to shine
his light. We need nations to come to our
light and kings to the brightness of our dawn. This season of Epiphany is the season Jesus did his ministry. Our ministry is needed to bring nations and kings together and take climate change seriously. We started with the People’s Climate March in September. It was an exciting day in New York City. The faith community was shining a light and lending a voice. But our ministry does not end with the Climate March. We need to hold vigils; we need to worship; we need to provide education; we need to pray. We need to take action.

As individuals we can pray, we can write letters and we can sign the ourvoices.net petition addressed to the world leaders. We can be in community with others to urge our leaders to develop a strong climate change treaty, and most importantly to take action on behalf of God’s creation.

Rulers and kings need to hear our moral voice. We need to use that voice to call out for the health and well-being of the creation. We need to use that voice in worship and in song. As this season of Epiphany begins, shine your light on the darkness.

Prayer: Dear Lord, Give us strength to shine our light on your creation. Give kings and rulers ears to hear and wisdom to work together to negotiate a strong climate treaty. You created creation good. Help us to keep creation good. Be in our midst as we worship and minister in your name. Amen.

Contributor: Sue Smith is a member of First Presbyterian of Rumson, NJ. She is the Treasurer of Presbyterians for Earth Care and a GreenFaith Fellow. She is currently a student at New Brunswick Theological Seminary.

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