Standing in my driveway at night, I look around my neighborhood. Most houses are filled with light that shines out into the darkness. And I know that in those houses, life goes on. Dinners are being prepared and eaten, families gather around televisions, books are being read, people are talking, family pets are being snuggled.
In the houses that are dark, I always feel that something is wrong, that a light should be shining there. These dark houses seem abandoned and sad. I wish those who live there had left a light on when they left.
I find that some people, like houses, have light that shines out from their inner being into the darkness. Their light brightens every room that they enter. My sister was such a person. People felt better when they were around her. She passed away three years ago, but her light still shines in me whenever I think of her and I am filled with her presence. Through her light she lives.
Astronomers and scientists tell us that the light we see from the stars is millions of years old, and when we look into the night sky we are actually looking into the past. Some of the stars that we can see no longer exist. They burned out before the earth took shape, before life existed on this planet. The light from these non-existent stars will continue to come to earth millions of years after life ceases to exist here.
The light from our sun and the reflected light of the earth and the moon will continue to shine out into space long after the sun has burned out and collapsed on itself, saying to those alien beings billions of miles away who look up into their night sky, that we were once here. We lived.