All The Light We Cannot See
I very seldom buy hard-cover novels, choosing to wait until they come out in cheaper paperback version. I know some will say, “Why buy a novel at all! Why not join the rest of civilization and purchase it on a tablet, I-pad or e-reader?” I am probably just old fashioned when it comes to books; there’s just something about holding them in my hand and physically turning the pages.
I don’t know if it was the title or the fact that it had a golden medallion on the cover that read “Winner of the Pulitzer Prize” written on it; anyway I splurged and spent $27 on the novel by Antony Doerr entitled “All The Light We Cannot See.” Friends, my spending $27 on a book is like buying the most expensive car in the world.
The novel is set in Nazi Germany where the destinies of an orphan boy named Werner, who becomes a vital part of the Nazi war machine, and blind French girl, Marie-Laurie, who carries with her what might be the world’s most valuable and dangerous jewel, become intertwined in amazing ways. The novel tells how in a world of hatred and evil, people against all odds try to be good to each other.
I know this is a big stretch but the title of the novel leads me to make it. We, as Christian people, believers in Jesus Christ, carry the most dangerous and valuable good news, treasure if you will, that the world has ever seen or heard. If you doubt that it can be dangerous and subversive, just think about this – it cost God the life of God’s only Son. This good news is nothing to trifle or play around with. If you doubt it is good news, think about this – on the very day Jesus hangs on a cross, he invites a known criminal into paradise.
Friends, lest we forget, this gracious, seemingly excessive and overly generous love doesn’t just start from the cross. Throughout his entire life and ministry, Jesus invites the least, lost and marginalized into God’s kingdom. Jesus has the audacity to invite known sinners into the presence of a Holy God as redeemed sons and daughters of God, simply because they believe in him. Friends, that’s grace at its most extreme. What God in their right mind would allow such a thing, just to redeem a wayward world? When Jesus said “it is finished,” the whole creation was and is redeemed and our salvation secured.
In Jesus Christ, God reveals all the light we cannot see. God reveals light enough to get us through the wilderness of our Lenten journeys. If Jesus is enough light to redeem creation, surely Jesus is enough light to get us through the messes and chaos of our present darkness. Because of Jesus, no midnight can last forever; pure love and perfect light casts out all darkness.
If you dare to believe this, I challenge each of you to light a simple candle of God’s good news of love in your heart and begin to change the world and dispel the surrounding darkness one light at a time. I don’t know about you, but I’m tired of walking in the darkness of despair and hopelessness. “I want to walk as a child of the light. I want to follow Jesus.”*
Indeed Jesus is all the light we cannot see. Jesus is light enough for us against all odds in a world that has gone politically mad and none of us appears to be immune from the malady. Lord, provide us light enough to “do no harm, do good, and stay in love with God.”
Light enough to delight souls with a slight glimmer of hope.
Light enough overcoming the pall of darkness obstructing God’s call.
Light enough to move hearts to love when no one cares to share.
*I Want to Walk as a Child of the Light UMH #206
Words & music: Kathleen Thomerson © 1970, 1975
Celebration CCLI #125028
If you would like to print, email or share this edition of Fair for the Journey, you are encouraged to use this pdf: Fair – All The Light We Cannot See – 03.02.2016