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Let Your Light Shine – Family Reflection Video

By: Father Boby John, C.S.C. on September 19th, 2022

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Let Your Light Shine – Family Reflection Video

Love thy Neighbor  |  Strengthening family unity

Often I hear: "My faith is between God and me." “My faith is private.” “My faith isn't worn on my sleeve.” “I believe in spending time with God in secret.” Jesus certainly did spend time alone with His Father. He went away to commune with his Father often. However, there is another side to our faith. In today’s gospel, Jesus compares sharing our faith with placing our light on a lampstand (Luke 8:16-18).

A Palestinian home in Jesus' time was typically made of hardened clay, with enough windows to let light in, but small enough to keep out dust and heat. An oil lamp inside the house burned precious oil. It was put on a lampstand so everyone could see its light. People would laugh if someone lit a lamp and hid it in a vessel or put it under a bed.

The Lord uses this comparison to show us that we must let our relationship with God be known. He showed His relationship with God, the Father, in his dealing with people around Him. He showed gender equality when He talked with the woman at the well. He showed social justice when He forgave sins and told the adulteress to go, and sin no more. He showed civic responsibility when He ate with a tax collector.

On a busy street, a woman's car stopped. Raising the hood, she searched in vain for the problem. Drivers negotiated around her, blowing their horns, and hurling bad words. Over a hundred cars passed her before a man rolled down his window and asked if she needed assistance. Apparently, many were too busy to pause, but the Word of God says: "Don't say to your neighbor, 'I will give you tomorrow' when you have it with you now." As a response to God's goodness to us, Jesus wants us not to hide the light of goodness. Implying that each of us is like a lamp.

In the office of the grade school principal hangs a poster with these words on it:

"My life shall touch a dozen lives before this day is done;
shall leave countless marks for good or ill before the sun sets this evening;
so this is the wish I always wish:
let my life help the other lives it touches by the way."

(Father Eliseo Yance, SVD, Bible Diary, 2006)

As mentioned in today's first reading from the book proverbs, we let our light shine when:

  • We help our neighbors and others
  • We respectfully share our views on the protection of the unborn
  • We share views on equal rights for men and men in their roles in the family
  • We know issues and vote for those who favor Christian values
  • We care for the less fortunate 
  • We care for the earth
  • We smile, say a kind word, lend a helping hand, or give time to someone in need 

We can all do something. Sharing our faith takes courage, especially when we are challenged and belittled. Courage is contagious. Your courage can encourage others to be courageous. We hide our light under a bushel when we remain silent or passive. Your shining light can encourage others to let their lights shine.

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About Father Boby John, C.S.C.

Father Boby John, C.S.C., ordained a priest in the Congregation of Holy Cross in 2008, worked as a pastor and as an educator with tribal populations in Northeast India for thirteen years. Originally from Kerala, India, Father Boby grew up with three siblings. He is a dedicated and detailed educationist with experience in educational leadership. He is currently working as an executive assistant at the world headquarters of Holy Cross Family Ministries, North Easton, Massachusetts.