A New Day

“Because of God’s tender mercy, the morning light from heaven is about to break upon us, to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, and to guide us to the path of peace.” (Luke 1:78-79 NLT)

My dad passed away a year ago today.  To me, it’s special that we share a birthday; mine into this world and his into the next. That being said, today could be a very painful day. Anniversaries of loved ones going home tend to send us into a tailspin. This morning, God gave me a very special birthday gift. For the first time in many, many months, I’m not sad. I’m not overburdened. I’m only hopeful.

At dawn, I set out on a bike ride. It had been in my heart to begin year 39 fresh and new. A solo ride in the early spring air seemed just the way to do it. The sun was only just starting it’s daily ascent and the night mist was still rising from the fresh-turned field, like a holy, earthy offering. I rose with it; legs pumping, lungs filling, chasing the new day and maybe a new season.

This scripture is Zachariah’s prophecy about his new son, John and his on-the-way Messiah-cousin, Jesus. Zachariah was an old man, worn by years of waiting. He had waited to serve his time in the temple, he had waited for his wife’s womb to open, and he had waited for the hope of the world to dawn once more. I can relate to Zachariah this morning, worn down and wizened by my own long season of waiting. Worn smooth, like a pebble against wind and water. 

Zachariah held his son, and after many mute months of silent consideration, he had just the right words to say. A new day was all wrapped up in the tiny blessings of baby. The season for God’s people was poised to change. Hope was suddenly on the scene again.

Today, I receive his word also; the promise of climbing out of darkness and death’s long shadow. Instead, I am running into marvelous light. I believe my feet are finally free to fall on the path of peace once more.

“But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people. You are royal priests, a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light.” (1 Peter 2:9 NLT)

Lord, thank You for the changing of seasons. A long winter makes spring all the more sweet. Thank You for choosing to dawn Your marvelous light in our lives. We are so grateful to be Your people. Amen.