Faith Matters

Messy meditation: The joy of reflected light

In their third Advent reflection, Jim Deeds and Brendan McManus SJ challenge us to let God's light into our lives

Jim Deeds and Brendan McManus SJ

The moon has no light of its own, but shines because it reflects the sun. Whose light are we reflecting in our own lives? Picture by Margaret McLaughlin

ONCE a child was heard correcting an adult who had said that the moon had been shining brightly the night before.

The child listened and then said: "The moon has no light of its own. It shines because it reflects the light of the sun."

Brilliant - and true.

We are like the moon. There are days when we have no light of our own. In fact, there are days when we are pretty dark.

If you met yourself on those days we would be a bit flat and lacklustre.

There are other days that we are like the moon in another way - we have no light of our own but we do shine a bit.

On these days we reflect back out into the world the light of others - the love, friendship and support we get from others.

Even though we may be a bit flat or lacklustre, on these days we are lighter feeling and hopefully others can see that in us.

To have others in our lives who give us light is so important.

Being connected to them keeps us going. It keeps us focused on the realities of life. It keeps our heads above water on the difficult days.

Pause now and give thanks for the people in your life who give you their light for you to reflect it back out into the world.

Now take a minute and think about someone or some people whose lives you might shine a little light into. Remember, others are like the moon too.

The spiritual path in life involves embracing the fact that we are indeed like the moon - we have no light of our own.

Any light we have comes from outside of us. We believe it comes from God.

And we believe that God wants to shine light into all of our lives - all of us. We have only to be open to letting the light in.

Reflection questions:

1. What is the light I need to live by?

2. Where can I go to source this light?

3. Where do I need to let my light shine?

Brendan McManus SJ, pictured left, and Jim Deeds

Finding God in the Mess - Meditations for Mindful Living by Jim Deeds and Brendan McManus SJ is published by Messenger Publications

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