Illumination- an instance of spiritual enlightenment; And inspiration, a revelation.
Illumination simply means to bring light. We turn on a light as we enter a dark room so we may see. The lighted room makes it possible for us to avoid stumbling over an obstacle that may be in front of us. As Christians we are taught that Jesus is the light of the world. The prologue of the Gospel of John says, “What has come into being in him was life, and the life was the light of all people. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.” That is spiritual illumination, and it brings the presence of God into our lives and guides us so as not to stumble over the hindrances of worldly life. Jesus is the Word and the Word lives with us and his illuminating spirit changes everything .
Spiritual illumination is at the center of our spiritual journey. It begs the questions:
Spiritual illumination is the real presence of God in our lives as is manifested by the Holy Spirit that dwells in us. At our Baptism we are baptized into the Holy Spirit. The sacrament of baptism bestows upon us the presence of God. The community that witnesses the baptism pledges itself to be the supporters of the life of the one who is baptized. At baptism we are given the light of God and the uplifting of the faith community. In the Wesleyan tradition, we experience “means of grace.” The sacrament of baptism and the participation in conferencing (community) are two of them.
Once we recognize the illumination of God in our lives, we are compelled to live a life that is worthy of such grace and love. That means that we begin to practice some of the other means of grace such as, Bible Study, doing good works, seeking justice and so many more. Divine illumination may change the things we do, the places we go, the people we associate with and the way we conduct our daily lives.
The Christian life demands that we go the second mile by always doing more than is expected of us. Christians are to be the first to help, the first to forgive, the first to pray and more than anything are to be the salt of the earth. The life of divine illumination is a heavy calling and a serious responsibility, but it is a life of great reward.
“I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness but will have the light of life.”
~~~John of the Cross
Look at how a single candle can both defy and define the darkness.
It has shown me that everything is illuminated in the light of the past. It is always along the side of us…on the inside, looking out.
~~~Jonathan Safran Foer
Most people use statistics like a drunk man uses a lamppost, more for support than illumination.
When we shine our light,
We help others through the darkness.
When we show them their own light,
We begin to illuminate the world.
Speak kindly, love deeply, have faith.”
It is in moments of shadow that illumination happens.
Judging others makes us blind, whereas love is illuminating.
While some men see ordinary happenings, others see divine light and guidance.
We are kept from the experience of Spirit because our inner world is cluttered with past traumas. As we begin to clear away this clutter, the energy of divine light and love begins to flow through our being.”
~~~ Thomas Keating
But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you.
There was the true Light which, coming into the world, enlightens every man.
For in the case of those who have once been enlightened and have tasted of the heavenly gift and have been made partakers of the Holy Spirit,
I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints,
But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come. He will glorify Me, for He will take of Mine and will disclose it to you. All things that the Father has are Mine; therefore I said that He takes of Mine and will disclose it to you.
Therefore do not go on passing judgment before the time, but wait until the Lord comes who will both bring to light the things hidden in the darkness and disclose the motives of men’s hearts; and then each man’s praise will come to him from God.
~~~1 Corinthians 4:5
Open thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of your law
Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.
When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.
~~~ John 8:12
LORD, Guide us by your Word and Spirit,
that in your light we may see light,
in your truth find wisdom,
and in your will discover your peace,
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.