3/4/2019 11:29:30 AM
Reflection: Light Shine
When was the last time you put on a face mask? Face masks (or facials masks) are one of the quintessential skin-care products that, in theory, transform your face. They are thin sheets covered in oils or a creamy paste you slather over your face. After leaving it on for a few minutes (or overnight), you peel it off to reveal a re-invigorated you. The mask (in theory) cleans your pores, removes wrinkles, moisturizes, firms up the muscles in your face, and makes you look years younger. The Face Shop, a beauty manufacture based in South Korea, sells dozens of face masks based on natural products. You can buy a mask infused with kelp, olives, cucumbers, blueberries, potato, rice, bamboo, and honey. If you use it correctly and often, the face mask is supposed to make you look healthier and younger. In other words, after you wear these masks, your face will shine.
One part of Moses' story (Exodus 34:29-35) we don't always teach in Sunday School is about what happened to Moses when he encountered God. We tend to focus on his message, the commandments, and the golden calf but we ignore how Moses changed. Moses, while talking to God, did more than receive divine ideas to pass on to the people. According to Exodus, each encounter with God changed Moses himself. After meeting God, Moses' face shined. In fact, he glowed so much, he veiled himself when he talked to other people. When Moses walked back down the mountain to talk to the community, the divine light went with him. It lingered on his face, reflecting through Moses and into the community that was all around him.
As baptized followers of Jesus, we carry that divine light with us at all times. When we were baptized, a thin cross of olive oil was gently placed on our forehead. We were sealed with a sign of the Cross and that oil, lingering on our forehead, shimmered in the light. Even though the oil eventually wore off, the Cross never will. That seal was the ultimate face mask, a sign that God, through the community, has claimed us as God's own. Regardless of our later choices and doubts, God never stops loving us because God, through Jesus, has placed his light on us. We are bearers of God's light into the world. We are always carrying the Cross of Christ with us. We are the beloved. The people around us might not always see how our face shines but we can, through our actions, act like it does. We can let our light shine - because that light will never end.