Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Lights please!

I’ll be the first one to admit it: I am not a morning person. I tend to thaw out slowly while I go through the motions of getting started with my day. Waking up in an upside down kind of way seems to set me up for an upside down kind of day.

The other morning was just one such morning for me. I got a cup of inspiration way before I got a cup of coffee. I got out of bed and started making my way towards the bathroom - half asleep and in the dark. Not even five steps further I felt something under my foot… something wet and mushy. EEEEEEEUUUW!! (and of course then I was w-i-d-e  awake! Turns out, the cat got sick during the night and left a little ‘parcel’ right in the doorway. Yuck! (Are you grossed out yet? Good! Maybe it will help you remember the lesson *wink-wink*.)

Right there and then I was reminded again just how much I need light in my life!

Nasty things happen in the dark, you know. You can get seriously hurt trying to find your way in the dark –
tripping over things, stepping on things, etc. When a child wants to be mischievous or when an adult is up to no good, isn’t it interesting how they seem to seeking out darkness too, hiding under a bed or in a closet, or robbing and killing in the middle of the night when most people are asleep. Dark alleys are certainly on the list of places to avoid for your own safety. And when people have secrets – usually not the good kind – it is referred to as skeletons in a closet, a place where it is hidden from sight. The unresolved emotional baggage that we try to bury also gain power over us in the dark and so does the sin in our lives. It can cause us to grope like blind men and stumble along in broad daylight. (Isaiah 59:9,10)

Jesus sheds some light on the subject in John 8:12 when He says, “I am the Light of the world. So if you follow me, you won’t be stumbling through the darkness, for living light will flood your path.”

Jesus’ life brings us light. First it helps us see ourselves for who we really are - sinners in need of a Saviour. Then He brings us out of the darkness of our sin and into the marvellous light of His love and grace. He shows us how to live in a new way and how to avoid becoming entangled in sin again. Because of Him we don’t have to be lost anymore, stumbling around and falling into a ditch. We can live victoriously; we can be free indeed!

Sometimes there can be pain, shame or sin that we want to hide in one dark corner or one compartment of our life. It is just one corner/compartment, right? Perhaps it is painful to confront or maybe you feel ashamed and don’t want anyone to know about it, but we need to remember that as long as we keep those things hidden from the Light we give it power over us. And not just that, but it seems to ‘grow’ in the dark. Does anyone know what I’m talking about? But the moment it is exposed to the light the works of darkness (whether it be pain or sin) loses its grip.

Very often it is fear of rejection that compels us to keep it hidden. I want to tell you today that nothing is hidden from an all-knowing God, but you know what? It is because He knows us so well that He sent His Son. He knew that we could never be good enough to earn His love and salvation on our own. So I want to encourage you today: bring your baggage – whatever it may be – and lay it at His feet. You don’t have to be ashamed of your failures or weaknesses. Nothing can separate you from His amazing love. (Romans 8:38) He wants to help you to be free and whole. Even at your most vulnerable you are safe with the One in whom there is no darkness. (1 John 1:5)    

But God’s light in us doesn’t stop with us. Oh no. God’s plan is always greater than one. For every one person that is saved, there is already another (or even several others) whose life will be touched by God because of the one. We are not called to be filled with His light just so we can hide it under a bucket. No, He has made us light-bearers, bringing out the God colours of the world. God is not a secret to be kept. He puts us on a hilltop, on a light stand and He says, “shine!”  Shine so that they will praise your heavenly Father. (Matthew 5:13-16 NLT & The Message) This world needs His light.

May His Light fill your heart today – every corner, every inch – and may His love radiate from you so that others may also be drawn unto Him! “Shine!”

As I’m ending off I’m reminded of the children’s song This little light of mine (I’m gonna let it shine. Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine).

Let this be the anthem of your heart today and everyday!

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