You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven. (Matthew 5:14-16)
“Light that baby up!” they say whenever the Los Angeles Angels win a game, and last night was no exception as the Angels beat the Seattle Mariners and became the 2014 American League West Division Champions. The “baby” they are referring to is a halo atop a 230-foot sign in the shape of a big “A” that is illuminated following games in which the Angels win (both home and on the road), giving rise to the expression, “Light up the halo!”
But last night, there wasn’t the typical piling on in the middle of the baseball diamond that traditionally accompanies the final out of a major league championship game. That’s because the final out of the Angels game didn’t seal the championship. It was the final out of a come-from-behind victory by the Texas Rangers 500 miles north in Oakland, almost an hour later, that sealed the deal. And for this, at least a third of the Angels fans had stayed, knowing that an Oakland Athletics loss meant the celebration could begin.
And begin it did, with the whole team coming back on the field after donning their 2014 AL West Division Champions T-Shirts and hats, along with a new addition to the celebratory gear: ski goggles, to protect their eyes from the traditional champagne bath that accompanies these landmark victories. They looked like scuba divers surfacing out of their dugout, and circling the stands slapping high fives with fans and spraying them with champagne.
All of this lasted almost until midnight, but it was worth it to see the players, accompanied by their wives, children and in some cases parents, all joining in with the fans for one grand celebration of no small feat that took 152 games to accomplish.
Some of you were probably knowing I would want to write about this victory, and wondering how I would work it into a Catch. Well it’s pretty easy knowing that the next part of the teaching of Jesus is His identifying us as the light of the world — that light, of course, being the light of Christ in our lives.
But far from the self-righteous hypocrisy that accompanies usual references to pious halos, these are rather unholy halos we wear, knowing that along with being the light of the world, we are still the salt of the earth. The halo of Christ is balanced out by the saltiness of our everyday lives and our human foibles. That’s why it’s fitting that these two go together.
So remember that today — that you are not only the salt of the earth, you are the light of the world, so “Light up those halos,” everybody, Christ is our light!