I run in the dark.
Most mornings, early, I’m out running the streets. It is very dark. The promise of sunrise is just hinting on the horizon when I get back home. Sometimes there are stars and moonlight. Sometimes there is the hazy glow of light pollution.
Running in the dark can be tricky.
I usually wear something reflective.
The streetlights make these little islands of light in a sea of night.
I run from island to island. Sometimes they are close to each other. Most times the islands of light are far apart.
The Saints. Lights in the dark. Islands of respite and courage.
No one is really sure when Christians began observing this day that celebrates the connection of the living and the dead in the Body of Christ. Because we share in Jesus body, and because Jesus lives, then when we die we live as well, death is done away with, it has lost its sting.
Yet we still feel that sting of grief, of loss. There is discontinuity between what we feel and what we know and hope. We are separated yet we are one in Christ, the communion of the saints is stronger than death. Today we lift up that strength and we are given strength.
Who are those who have been islands of light in the darkness for us?
A sea of darkness with lights scattered everywhere, the Communion of the Saints. Who are they? Where have you found respite and courage? Today we give thanks for those saints, those lights in our lives.
Of course, the thing about Saints is that they are contagious. Will we become islands of light, giving respite and courage to other travelers as well? Today we take up the torch and spread the holy fire.
Running in the dark can tricky.
We don’t run alone, we are in good company.
Today we celebrate that good company.
As John’s Gospel tells us “The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.”
Today, All Saints Sunday, we push the darkness back.
Lift up that strength that is stronger than death.
Give thanks for those who have given light in the darkness.
Take up that holy fire and spread it everywhere.
Celebrate the goodly fellowship.
Push the back the darkness.