The people living in darkness have seen a great light;
on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned. (Matthew 4:16)
Read: Genesis 8:1-10:32, Matthew 4:12-25, Psalm 4:1-8, Proverbs 1:20-23
Relate: It’s all gone. Everything. The entire world is just… gone. It’s all covered in water and being tossed about by storm. There are no people left. There are no animals. Even the fish probably aren’t having a very good time of it. There isn’t any land. Anywhere. All that once was is gone. Drowned. But there is this one little brown box bouncing around on top of the waves. Inside that box is the hope of life returning. God remembered Noah.
Israel cries out in desperation. For decades they have fallen deeper and deeper under the thumb of Rome. The best of the local rulers only steal their money then ignore them while jostling with politicians in Rome for a better appointment. At worst… there has been more than one massacre. If that wasn’t enough, every couple years another bandit rises up, calls himself the Messiah and begin starts launching attacks on everyone not following him and leading those that do to their inevitable death. The common man can only take so much. Then, suddenly, a man walks out of the desert. In a land living under the shadow of death, He is the light. God remembered Israel.
React: David calls out in the Psalms, “Answer me when I call to You. Give me relief from my distress.” How many times have I felt that same cry, that same longing, well up inside me? How many others throughout the ages have felt the same? This world has trouble. This world has sorrow. It has sickness. It brings death. We have drowned in a flood of tears. We have been crushed under the thumb of injustice. But we have not been left to go through this world alone. God stepped out of heaven to join us. He has come to bring light in our darkness. So now, like David, no matter how chaotic the world around us might seem, we can say: “In peace I will lie down and sleep, for You alone, Lord, make me dwell in safety.”
God I thank You that You have not left me here alone. I thank You that You have come. I thank You for shining Your light in my life when it was covered in deathly shadows. Help me to remember that no matter what I find in my world, it will not touch me as long as I am found in You.