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Prayer, Plain and Simple

By Claudia Mair Burney

Thursday, the third week of Advent

“There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. He came as a witness to testify to the light, so that all might believe in him. He himself was not the light, but he came to testify to the light. The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world.” John 1:6-9

I believe it’s possible to take Jesus’ saying we are the light of the world, and use it to puff ourselves up with pride. But a careful look at John the Baptist’s humility can set us straight. We are not the light. If we’re honest, we can admit that on our own we’re shrouded in inner darkness. At our best we merely reflect the numinous light of Christ. This takes the confusion out of our call to be witnesses. We don’t have to have everything right and know all there is to know about Jesus. All we have to do is testify–tell what we know–about him. This alone is a reason to rejoice.

Light of the world,
 

I’m so glad that you are the light, and I can only be light by being close enough to you to reflect your radiance. Help me to stay in your presence, so that I can share your light well. If there is any sense of self-importance in me, please take it away. I only want to tell others what I have seen, and what I know of you. You are love. This I know. So make me a lover, of you and others. I rejoice that you’ve given me your light, and I need not wallow in darkness anymore. Bring light to the whole world.

“Come, Lord Jesus.”

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