When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him; and assembling all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Christ was to be born. They told him, “In Bethlehem of Judea, for so it is written by the prophet: And you, O Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for from you shall come a ruler who will shepherd my people Israel.” — Matthew 2:3-6
Earlier in this journey of Simple Gifts, we reflected on light. Today we spend a moment reflecting on the potential negative of light. What could be bad about light? Well, when the light comes on, that which you do wrong can no longer be hidden. When the light comes on you can’t hide the fact that you are sneaking a midnight snack, snatching some loot, or cheating on your spouse! The light reveals things. Sometimes what we see isn’t always pleasant.
As the light shone on Jerusalem all those centuries ago, it brought to light two very clear and disturbing realities. First, the evil King Herod was not a godly man. Second, the very people who should have seen the same star that the Magi saw, missed it! The light of Christ reveals evil and ignorance.
The light of the Lord that shines on our stewardship can be just as damning to us. As we reflect on God’s generosity toward us, it shines a light on our response. What does it show? Often, it reveals our stinginess in support of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the fact that we miss out on just how significant the role we have as stewards of resources plays in the sharing of the light of the Gospel.
As this light continues to shine on us today, may the Lord who calls us to faith and service, grant us His grace to reflect honestly and respond generously to His call to be stewards. Repentance is the answer to evil and ignorance. Jesus is just the light we need!
©2019 The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod. Used with permission.