Look on the Face of Christ
By Vera Entwistle of Taipei, Taiwan (World Service Corps)
Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, ‘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 NRSV
My father fought in World War II. He was a quiet, gentle man. Even as a child I could not imagine him with a gun in his hand. When I would ask him to tell me of his years as a soldier, he would always respond, “It is best forgotten.” It was obvious to me that he could not forget.
Years earlier, a British soldier in World War I lost heart for the battle and deserted. Trying to reach the coast for a boat to England, he wandered on a pitch black night, hopelessly lost. In the darkness, he came across what he thought was a signpost. It was so dark that he began to climb the post so he could read it.
When he reached the top of the pole, he struck a match. He found himself looking squarely into the face of Jesus Christ. Rather than a signpost, he had climbed a roadside crucifix. Remembering that Christ died for him, he turned back. The next morning the soldier was back in the trenches with God to comfort him.
After my father took his life, I remembered that story, and I knew what I needed to do in time of distress and darkness. I needed to strike a match in the darkness and look on the face of Jesus Christ. Just as he came as an infant to a weary world…just as he came to confused disciples on the road to Emmaus…he came to me.
Prayer for Peace
Ever-present God, help us remember you are there on our darkest nights. Help us remember the love and hope Christ brings to us. May we share the light and peace of Christ with others.
Spiritual Practice: Light
Close your eyes, and become centered with your breath. As you breathe gently in and out, reflect on the statement, “The light of God is in all things.” The light has a bright, soft beauty and radiates God’s healing love. The light of God reaches you and permeates you with a deep sense of peace. Rest in the light as it surrounds and fills you. Thank God that you live in God’s light and it lives in you.
Today, God, when I see others, I will see the face of Christ.