Theme words are not really my thing. There will be an idea that I mull on for a bit, but normally a few words and concepts vie for meditative space and then a different concept comes along again.
The last week or so the idea of LIGHT has thrilled me.
My grandfather, a missionary from Sweden to South Africa for over 60 years, prayed consistently for ‘morke morke Afrika’: Dark, dark Africa. On so many nights in Uganda when our electricity is out, I cannot help but think of the physical darkness. And across so much of Africa a spiritual darkness remains. Things done in secret, evil hearts of people, so many who have never heard.
We had a special extended family evening of carols on 23 Dec : with a choice of meaningful songs, treasured Scripture and a precious atmosphere left me valuing the birth of Christ. A Swedish uncle and his wife were visiting with us and we got to sing some Swedish carols, which we don’t do very often. The Swedish hymn “Nu tandas tussen juleljus” – (Now we light 1000 Christmas candles) is one of my favourites.
As we were singing one verse resounded with me:
I varje hjärta armt och mörkt
Sänd du en stråle blid
En stråle av Guds kärleks ljus
I signad juletid
In every heart, poor, and dark
You send a gentle ray
A ray of God’s love light at this
Blessed Christmas time.
It was impossible not to sing the words as a prayer. For those in my family who are still in darkness. For friends. For people we have met the last while in South Africa. For people in Uganda. At this time of Christmas especially would the light of truth shine on Christ and His coming. May people be called to Him through this marvelous light.
Stilla natt, heliga natt!
Mörkret flyr, dagen gryr.
Räddningstimman för världen slår,
Nu begynner vårt jubelår.
Kristus till jorden är kommen.
Oss är en frälsare född.
Silent night, holy night!
The darkness flees, the day dawns.
The time of Salvation has arrived for the world
Now begins our jubilee.
Christ has come to the world.
Unto us a Saviour is born.\
As there was great rejoicing in the heavens at the time of Christ’s birth, so our carols should be joyful and grateful – the Light has come! The night must flee! The salvation for the whole world, the wonderful gift is here. If you know what it is like to try to do essential tasks in the darkness, you would understand how welcome light is. It is so much easier to move, to know where you are going and where to place yourself to avoid injury, to get ahead and to do what needs doing. How blessed to have that spiritual gift of Light! For all the world, for all to see – to know where to go. To avoid spiritual harm to our souls – all made possible because the Light of the world has come. Now begins our jubilee! I praise our Saviour for His gift of the eternal Light, come as a helpless baby –to pay the price of all darkness. Him in whom no darkness dwells came to a dark stable, to a dark world, to give a chance to escape the dark ourselves. How amazing. Jubilee!
So it was in lightness and happiness I enjoyed this time. With family across Gauteng, with family from across the world, to enjoy the Light who has come.
And this morning we received a text message to come and lighten the loads of others.
Baby Moses Baby sanctuary (www.babymoses.co.za) is closely linked up with our SA home church, Gemeente sonder Grense (GSG) – Congregation without borders. We love the social involvement of our church. One of the big projects they are involved with is a farm, ExSight. The farm is being developed bit by bit to make a difference to many people.
The newest development is for the Baby Moses homes. They are opening a new house on the farm – an awesome space with huge trees, lots of lovely animals to play with and such a great place to grow up. Baby Moses is doing a really important job – there are great numbers of babies who are abandoned, orphaned, and needing love across SA. The need for new houses grows daily, so God providing this house is an answer to prayers.
BUT the house needs a LOT of work before it can be livable – The walls are cracked, whole spaces need to be fixed up… it needs work! We went along to help for a while this morning and were so encouraged to see things moving forward.
Can you see the Light of Christ? N, our pastor’s daughter, gets stuck in with so much enthusiasm. And on the right there is Lanie, the big mamma of all the Baby Moses houses – on the floor, serving in real ways, not just the cootshy-cuddling of babies.
Prayers for the growth and needs of this home would be so appreciated – a lot still needs to happen before they open at the end of January.
Blessings for a stunning 2012 for all of you!