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Through the heartfelt mercies of our God,
God’s Sunrise will break in upon us,
Shining on those in the darkness,
those sitting in the shadow of death,
Then showing us the way, one foot at a time,
down the path of peace.

Luke 1:78-79 (Message translation)

The ‘winter blues’ is a recognised medical condition.  It is officially called ‘Seasonal Affected Disorder’ and scientists think it may be caused by a reduced amount of sunlight we have in the autumn and winter months.  Sunlight is something we need and often crave if we don’t get it, like the sunflower lifting its head towards the east as the sun rises. 

This image we get in this prophetic poem spoken by Zechariah is one of a people weighed down, they sit in the shadow of death.  It is a place of fear, and possibly despair.  But God does not leave people in the depths, God’s sunrise is coming and as the Son rises the shadow will be lifted and the way of peace will be revealed.

If you find yourself feeling weighed down, struggling with fears or uncertainties, perhaps take a moment to reflect on God’s sunrise.  Imagine the sun breaking over you, its warmth slowly enveloping you.  Allow God’s love and comfort to seep into your aching bones so that you are ready, one foot at a time, to follow the path of peace shown to us by his Son, Jesus.