Waiting for the Light: November 28

Lutheran Indian Ministries 2016 Advent Devotion

Besides this you know the time, that the hour has come for you to wake from sleep. For salvation is nearer to us now than when we first believed. The night is far gone; the day is at hand. So then let us cast off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light. 
Romans 13:11-12 (ESV)

 Living in the Arctic, life is full of extremes. From temperatures that run from 90 degrees above in the summer to 60 degrees below in the winter. The days of summer are long. The nights of winter seem longer. Between the longest and shortest day, we gain and lose about seven minutes of light a day. Where we live, the extremes are twenty-two hours of dark in the winter and twenty- two hours of light in the summer.

 The light and the dark serve as a stark reminder to me of the darkness the world was sitting in awaiting the first Advent. The coming of the True Light of the world. The seasons here remind us of the darkness in the lives of a sinful and broken world, and the stark light of the Gospel in the lives of those whose faith has brought the forgiveness of sin and the Holy Spirit, in the gift of Baptism.

God said, “Let light shine out of darkness.”

 I am thankful for getting to see this gift given to six young Native people this past year in the waters of baptism.

 In the extremes of the Arctic north, these young people are being called to awaken. They are hearing the call, the night is spent and the day is at hand. They recognize that salvation is drawing nearer and nearer. Nearer than when we first believed.

 Lord, we are thankful for Your light in places of darkness. Watch over this generation of young people. Guard their hearts and minds and keep them in Your peace. In Jesus’ name, Amen

Rev. Dave Sternbeck (Nuu-chah-nulth), Fairbanks, Alaska