There are so many beautiful Christmas lights everywhere this time of year. Martin Luther is credited with having been the first to put candles on an evergreen tree because he wanted to show his children how the lights reminded him of stars twinkling in the night sky.

Stars have been used as navigation aids for many years, pointing the way to go. Sailors used stars to chart their course on the water. Runaway slaves used stars to guide them to freedom in the North. The Magi followed a star to find Jesus. “The star they had seen in the east went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was.” (Matthew 2:9)

Isaiah prophesied about the coming Messiah nearly 700 years before Jesus’ birth with these words, “The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; a light has dawned on those living in the land of darkness.” (Isaiah 9:2) “Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you. See, darkness covers the earth and thick darkness is over the peoples, but the Lord rises upon you and His glory appears over you.” (Isaiah 60:1-2) This isn’t about the star anymore. The star just pointed out the way to the true Light.

John 1:9 also tells about Jesus’ birth. “The true light that gives light to every man was coming into the world.” In John 8:12, Jesus said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows Me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”

I like to sleep in total darkness. Room-darkening shades cover the windows in my bedroom and no alarm clocks are allowed, because even the tiniest light will keep me awake. Even a small hint of light and suddenly it isn’t so dark anymore.

Jesus is the Light. He came to bring hope into a dark world over 2,000 years ago, and He still brings hope into the world today. His light can wake up the deepest sleeper who is snoring away in darkness. His light shows the way to go. Jesus said to His followers, “You are the light of the world” and then admonished them by saying, “Let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.” (Matthew 5:14,16)

As you enjoy the beautiful twinkling Christmas lights, remember that Jesus is the Light of the world, and those who follow Him wholeheartedly get to be that light, too, bringing light into a dark world and pointing the way to Him. Live as “children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe.” (Philippians 2:15)

Shine on!

• Lisa Jisa and her family have been residents of Ahwatukee Foothills since 2000. She can be reached at lisa.jisa@gmail.com.

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