Faithful Presence

Being a Faithful Presence

Remove the heavy yoke of oppression. Stop pointing your finger and spreading vicious rumors!
Feed the hungry, and help those in trouble. Then your light will shine out from the darkness, and the darkness around you will be as bright as noon. The Lord will guide you continually,
giving you water when you are dry and restoring your strength. You will be like a well-watered garden, like an ever-flowing spring.
” Isaiah 58:9a-11 (NLT)

No one can deny that our society is in a dark place. The darkness that pervades our society starts in the darkened minds and hearts of people. People, our society, are in desperate need of light.

“Others can exhaust themselves waging culture wars, spreading fear, creating numbness. But Isaiah tells me that being a faithful presence in society attracts God’s faithful presence in (the) heart” (Pete Portal, Lectio 365).

We are bearers of God’s presence, His light that came to earth on Christmas to dispel the darkness. We infiltrate the darkness with the light of Christ as we are a faithful presence in society. Our faithful presence brings the presence of God; the presence that first transforms hearts, then transforms society. The key here is being faithful, to be actively involved in bringing light to our society, into our culture, daily. We are to lighten oppression, speak with grace and love, and help those in trouble. To bring light to daily life by speaking kindly to the harried checker at the grocery store; by sending a message of encouragement to someone who is feeling oppressed by life’s demands; by helping a neighbor who is physically struggling with raking their leaves or shoveling their driveway.

What better time than Advent to bring the faithful presence of God into every conversation, into every situation, into every relationship. ‘Then your light will shine out from the darkness, and the darkness around you will be as bright as noon.’
God brought His faithful presence to us in His son, Jesus.

Father, help me to be a faithful presence in society. Let Your presence shine through me to lighten the darkness of this world’s culture. Keep me alert to opportunities to lighten oppression, to speak with love and grace, to help someone who is struggling. Allow me to bring Your presence into every situation this Advent season. In Jesus name, Amen.

Written by Reenie Peppers

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