The thing that strikes me as I read this chapter is "The people sitting in darkness has seen a great light" I feel like there is so much darkness in the world right now, and I know I'm not alone. COVID has brought a lot of problems in many of our lives - in my own illness, loneliness in the face of grief, disappointment and worry about the future. There are times when it can seem like evil and death are thee unshakeable laws of the universe.
There's been a couple of comments about how the first few chapters of Matthew seem actually pretty dark when we stop to realize it. I think Matthew is in touch with the darkness, and maybe he's sort of tried to make sure we feel it with the stories of Satan and Herod and all of that. Then he tells us that there is a light. I sure want to see that light.
I initially had a picture of Jesus as this small point of light in an enormous sea of darkness. The darkness is big, but the light is there, small but steady, and I need to keep my eye fixed on this small, narrow, hope. The light seemed so small, so easy to miss. But I realized that this is not right. It is actually the light that is large - the whole universe is the light of the goodness of God, and the darkness we are presently in is the small thing, floating in that sea of light. Jesus is the light of the goodness of God poking through our tiny reality and showing us that the basic condition of the universe, the ground of all being, is good.