Day 34: Bringing It to the Light
BY JULIE MYERS | April 4, 2022
Since the pandemic started, I’ve been present at four births as a doula [a woman’s support person during labor and birth], with a fifth baby on their way any day now. It’s been such a deep level of intimacy with women I’ve only met once before seeing them vulnerable, powerful, and transformed in the delivery room. And while the pandemic rendered us so isolated, distanced, and lonely, being invited into these sacred moments of a family being born has been quite poignant and touching.
“Dar a luz” is the Spanish phrase “to give birth.” This phrase translates to “bring to light” which captures so beautifully the journey of a baby from the womb to their mother’s arms. And it is a journey—a tough one—with a delicate balance of agency and surrender.
Today’s readings include the famous passage from John: “I am the light of the world.” It’s not easy to see the light these days: war rages, the planet burns, and the pandemic claws its way into a third year. But even in the midst of this bleakness, God is giving birth to newness in us, bringing it to the light: thrilling yet terrifying, intimate and holy. And we’re never the same.
Walking the fine line between our own agency and surrendering to God, we witness the light: moments of bravery standing against hatred, solidarity efforts with citizens of war-torn countries, embracing simplicity to walk more gently on the Earth. Our endeavors, paired with God’s grace, bring to light the world we want to live in.
- What has been born in you these tough last few years? What is God bringing to the light in you this Lent?
- How have you brought the light to others?
- Where have you seen moments of birth and light in the world lately?
Julie Myers is ethical purchasing coordinator for the Ignatian Solidarity Network. She is a mother to two young kids and married to a fellow justice advocate. After graduating from John Carroll University, she spent three years in Colombia, South America doing human rights work. She then got her master’s in ministry at a Presbyterian school in Chicago before moving back to Cleveland. She loves gardening, new recipes, and book recommendations.
What God has dado a luz in me is a profound conversion in how I see myself. I have always raged at injustice (I was a strange little girl!) and always seen myself as bad and sinful and unlike God because of my lack of forgiveness. The horror of this pandemic- encountering activists who deny Covid and oppose masks and vaccines, while serving as a doctor to Black and Brown families getting sick and dying- has given birth to a deep faith that God accepts my anger and does not count it as sin.
In bringing light to others, I have striven to pray for the person who asked for my prayers and don’t give up until they tell me the prayer has been answered maybe not in the way they first thought about it but through the discernment of the Holy Spirit, they ask a question more fruitful for their soul. The added thought/prayer that has transpired is the light in others. In receiving the grace of another through the light of the Holy Spirit, I have realized the depth of God’s love for me and all of us. Our response to God’s love is manifest when I use those graces in service to others. God in His goodness nudges us to transform our world in union with all others so we may live in the light of peace and joy.
It was so inspiring to read your news of babies coming into the world, at least where you are. Earlier this year, midwives in part of New Zealand had no births to assist, because all the expected babies had already died last year.
My “light” has been an increased realization of relationship: We are made in the”image and likeness” of the Triune God. Every situation is an “I-you” or a “we-they” or a “we-all creation”. It is humbling and challenging.
Nice. Thanks Julie. Flowers bloom. Rivers keep flowing. Children are born. Surely God is not tired of creation.
Thank you for your reflection Julie. Finding light in our Lenten journey comes in a variety of ways – usually what begins anew (new birth, new initiative, new energy, an unexpected consolation, and so on). I wish you well in your ministry and in all you do.