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Speaking to the Soul: Keep singing

Speaking to the Soul: Keep singing

by Kimberly Knowle-Zeller


Morning Hymn:

This little light of mine, I’m going to let it shine.

This little light of mine, I’m going to let it shine.

This little light of mine, I’m going to let it shine.

Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.


They say that every pastor ultimately has only one sermon. And if you listen to a pastor preach five sermons, you’ll hear their one sermon.


These days, my one sermon is all about light. At the moment images of light keep surfacing. The light keeps coming to me. For the Lord knows I am desperately seeking the light.


Seeking hope.

Seeking peace.

Seeking justice.


I keep looking towards the light so that I have words to share that bring light into this world. When I’ve been overwhelmed at the violence and death and war in the world, when I’ve been unable to fathom the number of refugees fleeing their homes, when I shake my head at the angry rhetoric in our political sphere, when political leaders fail to think of all people, I’m at a loss.


And the light seems so far away.


And what if we have different thoughts on what constitutes light in this world? What if fear and misunderstandings allow us to misconstrue and falsely identify light? What if what one person calls light brings another into the darkness?


I need Jesus’ light to keep shining.


I need to keep singing. “This little light of mine. I’m going to let it shine!”


It’s a song that I’ve heard from the youngest to the oldest and a song that gets people smiling and clapping.


It’s a song that’s easy to teach and gets deep into our bones. A song that we sing together.


A song to bring light into the world.


So I sing the song, I teach it to my daughter, I lift my finger and wave around the light, and I turn to Jesus’ words in scripture to remind me where to find the light.


Scripture makes it clear what Jesus’ light looks like and for whom Jesus’ light shines. It’s a light for all nations, for all peoples, for all ages, races, and sexes. A light for the poor and the oppressed, a light for the hungry and the naked. A light for the sinner.


A light that will keep shining because we will keep singing.


A light for you and me.



Kimberly Knowle-Zeller is an ordained ELCA pastor, mother of a toddler, and spouse of an ELCA pastor. She lives with her family in Cole Camp, MO. Her website is


Image: photo by Leslie Scoopmire



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Pat Kincaid

I will share this post with my 8-year-old twin brother and sister Tuesday students and their mother this afternoon. I remind them often that they are a constant source of blessing to me, as is your post. Thank you.

Margaret Post

Thank you. I needed this so much this morning.

David Allen

Hide it under a bushel, NO, I’m going to let it shine.

All around the neighborhood, I’m going to let it shine.

Let it shine. All the time. Let it shine.

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