Sunday, January 6, 2013

Refulgence of the Father's glory....

On the Feast of the Epiphany we hear a description of Christ which is as old as the scriptures. He is the refulgence of the Father’s glory. It’s a strange word, refulgence. It means reflection, but not just any old reflection. This is not the reflection through a cheap mirror. This is the kind of reflection in which we see the very face of God. For, as Jesus tells us, he who sees him, see the Father, and to gaze upon the face of Jesus is to gaze upon the face of God.

Moses longed to see God’s face when he climbed Mount Sinai, but all he saw was the light from a burning bush. Aaron longed to see God’s face, but all he could make out were the shadows of his presence in the incense in the Holy of Holies.

But in the fullness of time, a star led wise men to him who is the light of the world, who through the blinding light of his paschal dying and rising vanquishes the darkness of sin, and even of death. So that we never need be afraid of the dark, ever again.

That light found a home deep within each one of us on the day of our Baptism and we will be judged some day on how well we have kept that light burning. He who is light will look deep within me and you and see if the flame has survived the onslaughts of our lamps and is still burning brightly with his love.

And our souls will burn like a shining city on a hill for all to see if we love as he did: if we are illumined by the truth and let his mercy shine on all who hate us. Darkness and death do not stand a chance if we but let him shine through us for all the world to see.

For in the end, when there will be no more need for the sun or the moon or the stars, the Son of God will be our light, as the heavenly Jerusalem, our final home, gleams in his reflected splendor for all eternity.

That Light dispelling darkness is our hope, our choice, and our destiny.