Rejoicing a while in a light
Sometimes that person is a particular writer. Sometimes it is a particular preacher (e.g., the great Pope John Paul II or our current Pontiff, Pope Benedict XVI). Sometimes it is even a blogger.
For the people our Lord addresses in today’s Gospel (John 5:33-36), that person had been John the Baptist.
John was a burning and shining lamp,
and for a while you were content to rejoice in his light.
So too are we sometimes quite content to rejoice in the intellectual and spiritual light of some great person.
But John the Baptist was killed. So also will every human light be taken away or diminished by death and the passage of time.
It is just as well, because as our Lord says, "I have testimony greater than John's."
In speaking of John the Baptist and our Lord, John the Evangelist puts it this way (John 1:8-9):
He was not the light,
but came to bear witness to the light.
The true light
that enlightens every man
was coming into the world.
It is good to take advantage of the great human lights, intellectual and spiritual, that God has given us, but it is even more important – indeed, it is critical – to be always focused on and open to the true light – Deum de Deo, lumen de lumine – our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.