Have you watched the news recently?
The world can be a pretty dark place. There is a lot of evil, a lot of immorality, and a lot of darkness. Entire groups of people are suffering at the hands of other groups of people. It can sometimes seem that light is snuffed out as soon as it is lit. But should followers of Jesus be surprised or shocked at this?
Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians Ch. 4, "In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. For what we proclaim is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, with ourselves as your servants for Jesus' sake. For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ."
In fact, we should not be surprised. Scripture is clear in stating that we have an enemy in this world, and he is on the loose drawing those without Christ into darkness. This enemy keeps our fellow human siblings from "seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ." It is a sad and terrible thing. But this is not where the story ends!
We worship the one and only God of Light. Just as our Creator made light shine out of the darkness in the very beginning of the universe, He is still making light shine out of the darkness of human hearts being transformed by Jesus Christ.
Jesus also spoke some words about light, in fact. In John's account of the Gospel, Ch. 8, Jesus says, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”
Jesus himself is the light of the world. This is glorious news, friends! By dying on the cross for our sins and rising again on the 3rd day, Jesus effectively conquered death and defeated darkness. This truth can turn the news we witness each day upside down, for our Lord has already won the victory. Light already won against darkness!
So, what do we do with this victory? What do we do from within the darkness that surrounds us?
By the power of the Holy Spirit living within us, Jesus says that not only is he the embodiment of light, but also that his light resides inside of us. He says to his disciples in Matthew Ch. 5, "You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven."
The way to spread this victory is not to run away from the darkness, but rather to let the light of Christ shine from within the darkness. We cannot avoid the shadows. Sometimes, we must willingly enter them in order to share the good news. Regardless, we know that this light is meant to "shine before others" for the glory of God.
How can we keep the best news in all of history to ourselves? Remember the old spiritual hymn you sang when you were a kid, "This little light of mine, I'm gonna let it shine." Let Christ's love pour out of you to meet the needs of others today. Be a light in the darkness.
-written by Chase Cotten, Media Director @ IDES