Daily Lent Devotions from Church Street UMC
Thursday, April 14, Morning – Maundy Thursday
In Honor of Stephen Ministry
Behold the Light
Read from the Gospel of John
“The true light that gives light to everyone was coming into the world. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. ‘I have come into the world as a light, so that no one who believes in me should stay in darkness.’”
It’s the darkness that gets me. Every year the Maundy Thursday service has touched my heart in unique and powerful ways. The music envelops us in sorrow, and our hearts grow heavier as the service progresses. We grieve seeing the church stripped of grandeur—even the Cross is covered. We ache as the pastors’ vestments are removed. We wince as the lights grow dim, and we mourn in the tolling of the bell. We leave in silence, knowing that if Jesus had not come, our whole world would be dark and hopeless.
But Jesus did come! He came into a world filled with greed and power, a world with little regard for human life, a world in which women and children were property and slavery was normal. He faced a world filled with resentments and violence, a world largely lacking justice, truth, ethics, and compassion. He was rejected by religious leaders who were motivated by self-preservation. In truth, he came into a world much like our own.
But Jesus did come! He lived among the poor and downtrodden. He spoke truth. He healed hearts and souls as well as bodies. He personified love, humility, forgiveness, compassion, generosity—even celebration and joy. Eventually killed by his enemies, Jesus was resurrected by God. And that has made all the difference.
Because of Jesus, our risen Saviour, we have hope even in the hardest and darkest places of our lives. The light of Jesus overcomes the darkness.
Father, even as you delivered us from darkness, awaken in us a new determination to model our lives on your beloved son, the Risen Jesus. Help us to walk in the light that he brought.