Ye are the Light
In the beginning God spoke, “Let there be Light” and darkness yielded.
Light filled the heavens. God sprinkled the heavens with stars and called each by name.
“And as starlight knows no boundary of space or time, so too our illuminations will shine forth throughout all eternity, for darkness has no power to quell such light.”
Richard Paul Evans –The Letter
“You are the light of world, a city that is set on a hill that cannot be hidden.” What an exciting day to live before the return of Jesus. The book of Acts tells us that those who live in the last days will see the great outpouring of His spirit upon all flesh. Isaiah 60:1-5 reads, “Arise, shine! For your light has come! And the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee.” What an opportunity there is today to be a shining light for Jesus.
“But the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day.” Proverbs 4:18
It is in the darkness of the night when our gaze is pulled upward towards the heavens that stars, millions of miles away, shine the brightest.
While days have grown dark before the coming of the Lord, there has never been a greater time to teach our children that their lives can shine. Whether it’s through a trial at school, through an illness, or through other difficult situations, your child’s life can be a light that pierces the night.
As adversity fills the halls of our high schools and secular colleges, God has promised there will also be light. For many, it is not “vogue” to be a believer or submissive to the word of God. Because of this, we see the corruption of our schools and degeneration of all institutions of learning. Even still, we must remember Jesus said, “In this world you will have tribulation, Fear not, for I have overcome the world.” We must teach our children to not be afraid and to take a stand for God’s word. They can be that light.
Blessed and Being a Blessing – Mathew Chapter 5
When Jesus spoke to the crowd and his disciples, he had compassion on them, wanted to bless them, and wanted them to be a blessing. The word “blessed” here is indicating something deeper than just the casual happiness of circumstances. Rather He is sharing a principle that we are blessed even if we suffer from persecution or from all manner of evil for His sake. Concerning the troubles of life, Jesus said when you follow me and live according to my footsteps, I will bless your life and you will be a blessing.
Not only shall you be light but you shall be salt. Salt has components of healing and preservation. Throughout this chapter, Jesus shows His desire that we be a light in the darkness and also a preserver of Godliness through our character and communication. When we reflect His self-sacrificing character, we are being a blessing as well as being blessed.
“Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth but I say Resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek,
turn to him the other also” (Matthew 5:38-39).
“Bless them which persecute you: bless, and curse not”(Romans 12:14).
Homes are the first place we dust the shine and help our children develop Godly character. As we teach our children to be kind, loving and prefer others, we are teaching them the biblical values of Mathew chapter five. Our own dining tables make the best environment for learning and loving.
As I look back on raising our four children, when we took time nurturing uplifting conversations and providing a loving environment, we were in essence teaching Mathew 5. Investing in tools that taught character and good manners such as fun games and books helped table-talk subjects stay upward. Taking advantage of movies, music, and stories to illustrate Jesus love to others brought heaven near and helped mold our children’s soft clay into firm Godly character. (The Nest series are wonderful DVDs that help teach Mathew 5 in a wonderful way).
As a mother of four, I would like to share an example how God can use young people who shine through difficult moments and share their lives by helping others. I recall so vividly times when our own children experienced difficult situations. One story in particular, happened to our daughter Shiloh, while attending a school nearby during our academy renovations. Many times during breaks, the other students laughed and played leaving Shiloh to herself. At the junior high lunch table, students would sit rank-in-file as to the most popular. Shiloh recalled being the last one at the end of the table and feeling so rejected. She was always a light that shined and never seemed lonely, as she had a very bubbly personality. However, she felt so rejected inside. Being the courageous person she was, Shiloh just prayed every night and wrote in her journal. At the time, she never shared these dark moments with her dad and I, but wanted us to think everything was great.
God did turn things around in time. When she began attending college, she and her best friend, who was a Godly young man from church, decided they would date. Because they had been such close friends for many years, they dreamed of the day they could become engaged and eventually married. However, that day would never come. A month after their engagement, Billy’s life was taken in a fatal car accident. Everyone was devastated. Shiloh’s life seemed to be a story of sadness. She finally had a true friend and then he was tragically taken away.
What would she do? Would she become bitter and quit serving Jesus? Shiloh continued to pray, and go to church. Through many days and nights of struggle, God gave Shiloh the victory and her dark trial turned to joy. She loved music and was the church lead keyboardist. Her days were filled with helping children, studying music, and going to college. During the darkest of days, Shiloh poured herself into church activity as well as her studies at the university.
One day as Shiloh sat in class, her name came over the speaker system to come to the office at once. She had no idea why the administration was calling her. When she stepped into the office, she saw a very depressed girl with dark hair sitting crumpled on the floor, sobbing uncontrollably. The dean of the college told Shiloh that she had called her because she knew she could help this girl who wanted to take her own life. The dean said, “All of us have watched you, Shiloh and we know whatever you have you can help this young lady”. Sitting beside the broken girl, Shiloh wrapped her arms around her and began to whisper, “You are not alone. I am here and God is here. You are not alone.” God had truly turned things around. Even the administrators and staff knew when they were desperate, they could turn to Shiloh. She was a light.
As anyone from the Lighthouse church and community could testify, Shiloh’s life became one of great impact. At the young age of 23, she became youth director leading the youth at Lighthouse to raise $250,000 for Sheaves for Christ and missions over a ten year period. She became the Messiah Drama director, impacting thousands of lives including our governor, state and local officials as well as all who came through the doors of our church.
Shiloh is still making an impact, having recently received a doctorates, and currently working as a university professor and administrator. What an outstanding shining testimony of triumph over difficult situations throughout her life, for darkness could not quell the light of Jesus radiating from her heart.
God is still calling young people everywhere to be the salt and light of Mathew chapter five. For truly, the darkness of this day can only cause the light to shine brighter. Jesus is calling for the pure in heart, the poor in spirit, the meek, and the peacemakers to arise and shine for the glory of the Lord is upon us. He is blessing those who forgive instead of hate, those who give instead of bully. All of these Godly characters may be sitting in the last seat at the lunch table, but in God’s time they will be the first. As He said the last shall be first and the first shall be last.
What an opportunity we have today to be a shining light for Jesus. Be the light – shine for His glory!
“But the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth
more and more unto the perfect day.” Proverbs 4:18
Article Submitted by:
Glenda Andrus, B.S.Ed.
Recommended books written by Glenda Andrus:
- “Parenting with Purpose”