Sunday, November 27, 2022

City on a Hill

“Come, let us climb the Lord’s mountain, ​to the house of the God of Jacob, that he may instruct us in His ways, ​and we may walk in His paths.” Isaiah 2:3

It is sad and pitiful that even as we boast of being Asia’s only Christian nation, not many people would say, “Come let us go to the Philippines, that the Filipinos may instruct us in their ways, and walk in their paths.” We are a Christian majority in our country, with more than 79.9% Roman Catholic, 2.68 % Evangelicals, and 1.16 % belonging to various Protestant denominations. Unfortunately, one cannot say we are a good example to other nations as we elect extremely corrupt leaders. Based on the results of past elections, we do not seem to value honesty, integrity, accountability, and people who work hard to serve the poor. 

As Christians, Jesus admonishes us to be a light shining in the darkness, a city set on a hill, doing good works (Matthew 5:14-16). We should be the salt of the earth (Matthew 5:23). Why salt? It is used for preserving food, and enhancing the taste of dishes. In ancient times, when there were no refrigerators, one of the ways the people preserved their food was to salt it. Bacteria and other microorganisms cannot survive a salt concentration of more than 10%, so meat was cured by rubbing a mixture of salt into pork, then storing it. The meat was then protected from decay and putrefaction. 

As Christians, even if the environment all around us shows a breakdown of values, we should bring salt and light into our little corner of the world. We are clearly called to be not of the world even if we live in it. We should try to influence, and improve the neighborhoods we live in, the communities we are part of, the offices we work in, and especially the families we are born into. 

Advent is a perfect time to bring the love of Christ into everything we do. I just saw a picture on Facebook of a courier who was crying. Do we thank the guys who deliver our packages, maybe give them something, even if it’s just a pack of coffee? How about talking to the person next in line to us to say maybe her dress is nice, it really fits her? Let’s use our creativity to encourage others, to give them hope. I like praying for strangers on Facebook. What can we do to be light and salt to others each and every day of Advent? If we are able to do it for Advent, even in small ways, perhaps it can become a habit for a lifetime! 

“Do not worry if all the candles in the world flicker and die. We have the spark that starts the fire.” (Rumi)

“How far that little candle throws his beams, So shines a good deed in a weary world.”(William Shakespeare) 

“All the darkness in the world cannot extinguish the light of a single candle.” (Francis of Assisi) 

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:^) Patsy