“You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house.” Matthew 5:14-15
Jesus called you and me the light of the world.
It only makes sense, really, since He is the “the true light that gives light to every man” (John 1:9) and now He dwells within us. As His body, saved and redeemed by His blood, Jesus asks us to shine His light. And according to Matthew 5, that light should never remain hidden. Instead, it should light up the sky like a city on a hill.
Do you shine, dear one? Are you giving Jesus what He asked for?
I can’t help thinking of the song I used to sing as a little girl in Sunday school. We’d proudly hold up our hands with fingers pointing toward the heavens and proclaim, “This little light of mine, I’m going to let it shine.”
Only it didn’t shine. I never let it out.
We often make the mistake of trying to act like Jesus. We think we shine His light by simply imitating what He would do. But we don’t have the strength to act like Him all the time, so that inner “self” we try to hide through our good behavior reveals itself more often than we’d like it to. And the watching world looks at our version of Christianity and calls it hypocrisy.
Can we really blame them?
You and I aren’t supposed to act like light, dear one. Jesus intends for us to become light.
God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. 2 Corinthians 5:21
Jesus carried the burden of our sin to the cross so that we could become His righteousness. He actually changed our nature. Now He invites us to believe it.
For at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light. Ephesians 5:8
Beloved, Jesus doesn’t want us trying to act like something we’re not. He wants us to know who we truly are and allow His Spirit to empower us to live it.Jesus doesn’t want us trying to act like something we’re not. He wants us to know who we truly are and live it. Click To Tweet
Jesus gave us His nature the moment we put our faith in Him and received His Spirit to dwell within us. Now we need to let Him out. We need to yield to the power of His Spirit and let His nature take over.
You see, beloved, Jesus shines through a transformed heart.
Have you offered Him your heart to mold and change, dear one? Have you told Him you’re willing to let go of your bitterness? Have you invited Him to circumcise your heart to love with His selfless love?
It’s time we stopped pretending and let Jesus set us ablaze with His light!
Times are changing. Evil shows itself in increasing measure. Scripture foretells of astonishing things to come—some of them terrible, some wondrous—but all of them remain certain.
Yet in Christ, we have glorious hope!
But at that time your people—everyone whose name is found written in the book—will be delivered. Multitudes who sleep in the dust of the earth will awake: some to everlasting life, others to shame and everlasting contempt. Those who are wise will shine like the brightness of the heavens, and those who lead many to righteousness, like the stars for ever and ever. Daniel 12:1-3
Those who walk in truth drawing others to their light will shine like stars. When will these things be fulfilled? God made this astonishing announcement to the prophet Daniel centuries ago.
“… When the power of the holy people has been finally broken, all these things will be completed.” Daniel 12:7
When the power of the holy people has finally been broken? Why would God break His own people?
Consider the power struggle that rages within you. Each day you must choose whether to bow to your own self-will or submit to the Spirit’s leadership. More often than not, your flesh wins the battle, quenching the Spirit’s power.
Our selfish desires have remained too important to us.
Yet in the last days, the power of the Spirit will rise victorious. Christ’s own will finally overcome and claim the victory Jesus purchased for them through the cross. Like in the days when Christ first birthed the church, believers will choose to abandon self-will, leaving its power broken. His church will rise, yielding to His Spirit in glorious surrender, uniting in the love and unity glimpsed at the birth of the church and restored in time for the return of the King.
Beloved, you and I can hasten His return.
You ought to live holy and godly lives as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming. 2 Peter 3:11-12
As we choose to surrender to the Spirit’s work in our lives, allowing Him to sanctify our hearts and renew our minds with His purpose, we move toward the fulfillment of Christ’s kingdom.
Like the Disciples who first answered Jesus’ call and paved the way for us, will you choose to live radically for Jesus, abandoning all else to the rise of His glory? I pray that you will, beloved,
. . . so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe. Philippians 2:15
Then our eyes will finally gaze upon our Lord and King without a veil. Glory rises, dear one. Will you allow Christ to reveal it in you?