Turn the Light On!

A man ran through a pitch dark room shouting, “I hate you, darkness!  Go away!  Stop being dark!”

Silence.  The darkness didn’t go away.  In fact, it didn’t even budge.  For hours the man ranted and raved against the darkness in the room, but the darkness never wavered.

Finally another man walked into the room.  He did not scream and curse the darkness.  Instead, he walked resolutely across the room and turned on the light.  The darkness was gone.

Sometimes I get so frustrated with the evil in the world that all I do is complain about how dark the darkness is.  There are so many issues that I can get upset about, but there is only one solution: Jesus, the Light of the world.

A few days ago, as I was reading in the Gospel of John, I was excited to find Jesus’ description of how He “turned the light on” for the world.

   “If I had not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no cloak for their sin.
“If I had not done among them the works which none other man did, they had not had sin…”  John 15:22, 24a

Jesus spoke and lived in a way that set Him apart from everyone else.  However, Jesus was not just trying to be unique.  The purpose of His set apart life was so people would know that they had sin.  Unless light shines into a room, there is no way to tell what is in the room.  Similarly, unless the light of Christ shines into a person’s life, that person will never know the true state of their heart or see their need.

Think back to the day you accepted Jesus as your Savior.  Think about how different your life would be now if you had never done that.  I remember what I was like.  I remember feeling miserably hopeless – and I grew up in a Christian family!  I would never have had peace, I would never have gone to VOICE, and my life would be a wreck right now if it weren’t for Jesus in me.

“But after that the kindness and love of God our Saviour toward man appeared” (Titus 3:4).  No one becomes a Christian without the kindness and love of God “appearing” to him.  That’s “turning the light on!”

As we learn to see unsaved people the way God sees them (see Joel’s post for more on this), let’s look for ways to “turn the light on” for them.  How can we speak and live in a way that will shine Jesus, the Light of the world, into the lives of others?


Life Within

In this part of the world, Central Wisconsin, winter brings cold and a blanket of snow to cover the earth. The only vegetation that seems to be alive are evergreen trees and indoor plants. It is sometimes depressing to look out at a forest and see trees that were once green and covered with leaves now bare and grey. From all outward appearances, the trees look as if they have all suddenly died. And yet, once all the snow has melted and the warmth of spring comes, they seem to come to life again and grow beautiful.

I was recently meditating on how the Lord sees our hearts, and the hearts of our friends that do not yet have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Before we knew Him, we were dead. There was nothing beautiful or valuable about our lives. And yet, within each one of us is the potential for new life through Jesus. The sacrifice of Christ on the cross provided a way for each one of us to change from something cold and dead to something new and living.

In our interactions with unsaved friends and coworkers, how do we see them? Are they simply part of our world that we interact with? As Christians, we have the responsibility from the Lord to tell others about Him and what He as done for us. We should see those around us they way that God sees them; Souls in need of salvation. In our everyday lives, our words and actions should lead others to the knowledge of Christ.

When I look out at the world, and see how so many reject Christ and what He has done for us, I am tempted to see a ‘forest’ of dead people. The Lord looks at the same people and continues to make His love available to them, and commands us to do the same. In our everyday lives, our words and actions should lead others to the knowledge of Christ.

Be bold in proclaiming the word of the Lord, and the love that Jesus has made available for all!