One of my favorite things during the holiday season is the appearance of lights—they manifest everywhere, in trees, yards, on houses, and sometimes in the most unusual places. People line up in their cars, waiting to enjoy light spectacles and shows that shine brightly.
Thousands of tiny bulbs glisten as energy flows through them, bringing smiles and ‘oooh’s’ and ‘ahhh’s’ because of the beautiful, magical atmosphere.
In order for a brilliant presentation to captivate, several things are required—the light bulbs, the network of wires that conduct electricity, the power source, and the creative design.
Let’s examine the metaphor on a personal basis. YOU are the bulb, intricate, colorful, delicate, and radiant. Or perhaps you are that fragrant, scented candle that releases a pleasing aroma and hue everywhere you go.
God is the power source, the fire, the One who infuses each of us with special gleaming abilities. An ancient psalm says that he is ‘a fountain of cascading light, who opens our eyes to light.” We receive his light, glory and energy, then reflect it—from the inside out.
You are placed into a community—in perfect timing—as one small part among many others, where everyone comes together to display variety and magnificence. Connecting with others encourages and strengthens our illumination abilities, especially during times where we feel we’ve lost our spark.
A single light exhibits a special glow, and a bunch of lights together create a powerful, joyful ‘wow’ effect.
One more aspect of this scenario begs to be mentioned—light can only be fully seen and appreciated if displayed in the darkness.
Dark corners are found everywhere—in people’s physical needs, emotional trials, or spiritual struggles. Our lives become more meaningful if we purposely shine where light is most needed.
Perhaps you will recognize these words of Jesus:
“You’re here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. We’re going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. If I make you light-bearers, you don’t think I’m going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I’m putting you on a light stand. And now that I’ve put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine!”
Question: Where do you need to go shine brightly this week?