You who dwell in the garden with friends in attendance,let me hear your voice.
Song of Songs 8:13
The street light outside our house is being replaced. The Utility Company tells us that it has been there for the past fifty years, when this road was first constructed, and now it needs replacing. Before the estate was built there was no illumination at all along what was just a track leading into the woods. The old light has served us well; it has needed new bulbs every so often, of course, but on the whole there has been no problem. We are told that the concrete standard is now crumbling and if not dealt with will collapse. The new light on its taller shiny steel pole will provide greater illumination to a wider area. The important point though is that the replacement lamp still will still need the same electrical power that had supplied the old one, but it will use it more efficiently.
I wonder how many of our lives are a bit like that. Are we wandering along an unlit country track in darkness, tripping over the fallen branches or slipping on the muddy path with nothing to tell us that we are even on the right path at all? Then maybe we find a track which has the occasional light, some small form of illumination to guide us. But it is not until we get to the tarmac road that we find some proper lighting so that we can see where we are going.
The Old Testament tells of the people of Israel wandering in the desert, symbolically in the dark until God provided Moses with the Law which they were to follow. From that time forward so long as they abided by the Law everything went well for them; when they strayed from God’s path things did not. However, over time the people felt that the Law needed to be amended, adjusted to cover every circumstance of their lives – a bit like replacing the light bulb in the street lamp. The result was that in the end the Law became too restrictive; not doing the job it was supposed to do and so needed replacing. That replacement was of course Our Blessed Lord and Saviour. Note though that He did not come to replace the old Law since it was after all the Word of God, but to build upon it; to use the same power source that fuelled the old system but more effectively.
So are we using the power source of God’s Will and Word effectively or are we wasting some of it by putting our own wants and desires first?
Peter is a father and a grandfather who has been retired from full time work for a number of years