Confession: Coming to the Light

A reflection on John 3:16-21, the Gospel reading for the second Wednesday in Easter by Mother Maria-Michael Newe, OSB

One of our hand-painted 2021 Paschal Candles

“And this is the verdict, that the light came into the world, but people preferred darkness to light, because their works were evil. For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come toward the light, so that his works might not be exposed.”

John 3:19-20

The theme of “coming to the light” gives us a great image of what will happen when we die.  If we are free when we die, we will go to the light quickly, without any problem, especially if all our sins have been confessed and everything has been brought into the light, because then there are no hidden corners, and so we are not afraid of the light.  I think that if we don’t bring things to the light, evil fills us with shame before God, and it’s shame that makes us want to hide from God.  Excessive shame shouldn’t be a part of our lives, because He died for us: “God so loved the world that he gave his only-begotten Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life” (John 3:26).  It’s good to feel shame when we sin, but we should never let our sin make us fear the light.   Never.  Because it is God Himself calling us to the light.  Whatever evil tries to make us feel so ashamed of, we should run to bring it all the more to Christ’s feet… and all the faster.   When we place our sins at His feet in Confession, they are gone.  Therefore we need the grace of light, so that we can bring everything to the light.  What’s funny is that when you bring something shameful to the light it shatters its power.  The light shatters it – it has no power!  So let us do this with great joy, especially during this Easter season.

“And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”

Matthew 16:18-19