A Light Shines Bright

When I was a little boy, I was afraid of the dark. I wanted to sleep near a light or better yet, next to the window where the moon and the stars brought just enough light into the room to chase away my fears and assure me that nothing scary would happen to me while I slept. Now that I am older, I am understanding that the dark is not such a scary place after all. God does many amazing acts of love in the dark: God creates the world. God speaks to us in dreams. God is born in a stable in the dark of the night. God walks out of a darkened tomb. And, God promises to shine in our hearts as a light that cannot be overcome by the darkness. God uses the darkness to make things new and in so doing, God drives the fear from dark and makes it as bright as day.

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One of my most favorite times in Kenya is at night, when the African sky lights up with the brilliance of stars and moon. I look into that sky, standing in the fields so carefully tended and nurtured by the hands of my Kenyan friends, and I feel embraced by God. I feel as safe as a baby in my mother’s arms. And, I trust that God is always up to something good even in the darkness of night.

May you trust God even when you experience darkness, even when you are afraid or alone or lost; even when you don’t see the stars or the moon and no light seeps into your darkness. God is closer than you think, and God is always doing something new, something wonderful, something we can never imagine . . . . like weaving friendships between Kenyans and Americans through Mama Ada’s dreams and prayers.

Merry Christmas!

- Rev. James B. Cook