November 21, 2022: Luminescent Grace

Reading: Isaiah 2:1-5

The word that Isaiah son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem.
In days to come
the mountain of the LORD’s house
shall be established as the highest of the mountains,
and shall be raised above the hills;
all the nations shall stream to it.
Many peoples shall come and say,
“Come, let us go up to the mountain of the LORD,
to the house of the God of Jacob;
that he may teach us his ways
and that we may walk in his paths.”
For out of Zion shall go forth instruction,
and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.
He shall judge between the nations,
and shall arbitrate for many peoples;
they shall beat their swords into plowshares,
and their spears into pruning hooks;
nation shall not lift up sword against nation,
neither shall they learn war any more.
O house of Jacob,
come, let us walk
in the light of the LORD!



Since adopting a rescue dog a year ago, walks have become a daily occurrence for us. My fitness app tells me I walk an average of 3.7 miles a days, not always easy for 50-something me, especially on the hilly backroads of central Pennsylvania. But, it’s worth it. Like so many others, I feel a deep kinship with God when I’m wandering amongst the trees and wildlife and watching the seasons change—even when I’m huffing and puffing to get to the top of the next hill. These walks are a time to be in godly conversation and experience in some small way the power of walking in the path of the Divine.

Sometimes walking in the light of the LORD is as simple as walking out the front door and appreciating the sights and sounds of nature. Sometimes it’s as difficult as struggling to beat swords into plowshares. That is, in a broken world where chaos often seems to rule the day, it can feel daunting to follow God’s path of hope and peace and mercy. It’s not always easy to walk in luminescent grace. But, the promise and possibility of God in Christ Jesus and through the Holy Spirit is that we are always in the presence of the divine, even in—especially in—the darkest, most difficult of times. When life feels like we’re constantly walking uphill and we can’t quite reach that pinnacle, God walks with us, Christ strengths us, the Holy Spirit empowers us. As we begin this season of Advent, may we walk upright and dwell in God’s brilliance.

Lisa Raylene Barnes



God of hope and mercy, teach us your ways and guide us to walk in your light—today, tomorrow, and always.