Working for Justice Advocate Rev. Loni Vaitohi shares a Christmas message.
The season of Christmas and the coming of the light according to Isaiah’s prophecy (Isaiah 9:2-6) can be enlightening and liberating – but also demanding.
It is enlightening because we see and know what we have not seen in the dark. The joy of seeing liberates us from our own prejudices and vulnerabilities. It makes us accountable for what we do or do not do in the light.
The coming of the light is also demanding. It demands:
“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 NRSV)
The socio-political darkness in the time of Isaiah is not too dissimilar to the socio-political and economic darkness of our time. There is still displacement. People have not only lost their land, they have also had their dignity taken away. Children are trapped in detention centres. Refugees and asylum seekers are stripped of their basic human rights. We are covered in thick darkness when we see racism, modern-day slavery, migrant exploitation and apathy to climate change, to name just a few examples.
But there is hope! The light of Christ that has come, is coming and will continue to come to enlighten, to liberate and call upon the children of the light to arise and shine.
As children of the light we can shine through with our prayer and advocacy by speaking out when we see inequitable and unfair policies. We can shine by standing with those who are excluded and speaking up for those with no voice.
“And the glory of the Lord has risen upon you” (Isaiah 60:2b).
Wishing you all a very blessed, peaceful and joyful Christmas.
Rev. Loni Vaitohi