While churches were locked down, residents of Rohini, an aged care village, heard a series of reflections by a fellow resident, Don Cameron, a former bishop of North Sydney. A group of residents who were encouraged by the talks have published them as Rohini Reflections, on sale at Koorong. Here is one of Don Cameron’s meditations, written when he was 93.
I am the Light of the World
These words are the second of the sayings in which Jesus told his listeners about Himself and what He offered them, and what He offers and promises us. Light and darkness are big words in John’s Gospel. Jesus Himself is light and all that this word ‘light’ means. But he speaks to a world set in darkness, which in the end, shall not prevail. Light will win. And that is the story of Easter and the Resurrection.
When Jesus speaks of light and darkness, He is speaking of good and evil, of knowledge and ignorance. He is speaking of our world, here and now. Our world is and always has been, full of uncertainties. And what does the world in which we live see as really worth having? Wealth, big houses, luxury holidays? What do people want, and are they happy, really happy if and when they get what they want? Sometimes they do, and they are disappointed, even cruelly so.
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And what about walking in darkness? Quite dangerous. We might fall over and hurt ourselves, even badly!
Jesus presents His hearers with a choice. Follow Him, live as He requires, put God in the centre of your life, leave the future in His hands and, in the end, in the finish all will be well. The way may not be painless, but we will never be alone. And gladness, beyond expectation, will be at the end of the journey.
These words of Jesus say to us two things. First, the world around us, whether it be in the first or the twenty-first century, is both hazardous and deceitful. If we had all the things the television advertisements display to us, would we know lasting joy, unshakeable hope? And where are the sure guarantees of safety and care? On the television screens, or on the pages of the New Testament?
To follow Jesus, walking in the path that He has set before us, secure in His company, steady in our allegiance and trust, He will not fail us or forsake us, in life and in death. To walk in the light is a journey of gladness, not free from pain, but never alone, and with an end of joy and wonder beyond any expectation.