of praying for light

“This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.”
—1 John 1:5


Checking the news early this morning I learned of the strangling of a young Pakistani woman in an “honor killing” almost certainly conducted by her own family. I keep thinking about it, about the things happening around the world in God’s name. I keep thinking about Jesus, who was also killed in the name of religious law, in the moments of his death pleading with the Father for the forgiveness of his killers. I keep thinking about how he said, “They do not know what they are doing.” He knew they were striking blind, like a fistfight happening in the dark.

This morning before church I was standing at the stove, thinking about these things and searing vegetables for a casserole for dinner when I heard Hugh, who had been building a tower with magnet-tiles in the corner of the kitchen. “I’m praying at the mosque. I builded a mosque so we can pray.”

Norah has always made up little songs to sing to Jesus and sung them in her high-pitched, repetitive little voice as she’s crafting or playing. Lately the melody of every song I hear her singing is the yodel-like drone of the call to prayer, which sounds through our house five times a day.

We are surrounded by the blind.

When we pray for them, what do we pray? Are we praying for our safety and protection, or for justice, for their capture and punishment? Or are we praying for light?

We know that our God is a God of justice and it is a comfort that all things will be made right. I can understand why the writers of the psalms plead with God to give their enemies their just deserts. But the fact remains that God didn’t give me mine.

Fear is powerful–and fear tactics are their best weapon. Unless we have love.


“There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear.”
–I John 4:18a

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8 Responses to of praying for light

  1. Debara says:

    Betsy, thank you for sharing your reflections! With appreciation, Debara

  2. Katy Jack says:

    Dear Betsy. I am in Isaiah 37 this morning and read this just after your blog: O Lord Almighty, God of Israel, enthroned between the cherubim, you alone are God over all the kingdoms of the earth. You have made heaven and earth.
    Praying for you all in I that His love and light would shine through you into the darkness, in to the earth over which he is the Lord. Xx

  3. Lisa Gennell says:

    One of my favorite portions of Scripture is the account of Stephen’s martyrdom. (Acts 7: 55-56) “He had been full of the Holy Spirit, looked up steadfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God, And said, Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God.” (v. 59-60) “And they stoned Stephen, calling upon God, and saying Lord Jesus, receive my spirit. And he kneeled down, and cried with a loud voice, Lord, lay not this sin to their charge. And when he had said this, he fell asleep.”
    Only by the power of the Holy Spirit cannot we love like this and can we walk without fear. May the Holy Spirit empower you and your family to do the work He has called you to do. (Just prayed for you). Thank you for your work of love. ❤

  4. Lydia says:

    Joining you in praying for light!

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