The new you… made to shine!
“You are the light of the world… No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house.” (Matthew 5:14-15)
Jesus follows up on His “city on a hill” analogy by reinforcing the vital purpose of light. Light’s purpose is to dispel darkness – which enables people to see, which enables people to avoid danger and peril, and accomplish tasks they could not do, without the light to help them.
I recall taking one of those underground cave tours. At one point in the journey, the guide gathered all of us together and then turned out the lights. Total darkness is a strange sensation. No light means NO ability to see. Quite literally, if the guide refused to turn the light back on, I would still be in that cave. There was no way to find my way out of the cave, because the darkness was so overwhelming. Needless to say, we were all glad when the guide restored the light!
This is pretty much Jesus’ point. It is senseless to have light and not use it to illuminate the darkness. Unless the light is doing what the light is supposed to do, it is not serving it’s purpose – and “everyone in the house” remains virtually blind.
I am reminded that “the god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers so they cannot see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.” (2 Cor. 4:4) God’s view of things is that the people of this world are in darkness, but they really don’t know that they are in darkness.
If you were born in that dark cave (mentioned above) and had never seen light, you would not know you were in darkness. Because you had never seen light, you would have nothing to compare to the darkness. Darkness is the real world. Light is a foreign concept.
Jesus came to invade the darkness – to burst onto the scene and provide glorious light to countermand the darkness – and to give meaning to the Light.
He passed this task onto those who share His Name – and His purpose… to bring Light into the darkness.
The real exciting news is that you ARE already the Light. This is part of what it means to be the new you. Our task is to put ourselves in position to be a giver of Light – to be where Light is needed and simply shine!
Prayer focus: God, help me to be intent on being light where Your Light is needed.