God and Light. It is all through the Bible. Darkness will be overcome. Light has come. Darkness is overcome. The story of the Bible. What is hidden is brought into the open. It is the Gospel.
“You are the light of the world. A town built 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. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” (Matthew 5 v 14-16)
With similar metaphors as salt in that it is impossible for a city on a hill to be hidden or that of a lamp which is only extinguished by the small measuring bowl to snuff it out; we are the light of the world! The disciples of Jesus.
In Zundert, Holland in 1853, a Lutheran pastor became the proud father of a baby boy. At 16 the boy went to work for a firm of art dealers in The Hague. A few years later he took the opportunity to travel to England. There he fell in love with his landlady’s daughter, but she rejected him. In his grief he turned to Christ. He began helping a Methodist minister in Turnham Green and Petersham. The conviction grew that he should become a full-time evangelist, and in his mid-twenties he returned to Holland. He soon found great success in preaching to the poor, dressed like a peasant and living in their company. He washed their clothes, cared for their sick, consoled their dying and he led them to Christ. However, the Church leaders of the day rejected him and forced him to give up his ministry. For many this would have brought a crushing blow with no recovery. But God can bring light out of darkness. He went back to the world of art and tried his hand at painting. His name was Vincent van Gogh. Yes he battled throughout his whole life but he constantly looked beyond, to the starry sky, he carried continually a sense of wonder forcing itself through the dark shadows that attacked him. On one occasion he said, ‘For my part I know nothing with any certainty, but the sight of the stars makes me dream.’
Maybe you have unanswered questions. Maybe you have pain in your life. Maybe you can make no sense of it all. Today a disciple may wake thinking their life is over. They were a city on a hill, they were a light in the house, but this morning darkness has come.
I want to get hold of that person and shake them.
There is hope. Great hope. There always is with a God who is the light of the world.
We align ourselves with what Paul says in 2 Corinthians 4:6
“For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness, ‘made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ.”
It is never over for us because of the eternal light which will always shine through our lives.
We face trouble but the light is shining through our troubles.
We approach the darkness of people’s lives and the light brightens their perspectives.
Death does its best to cast its fear but the shadows flee because of the light.
This is our peace and it is our message.
Don’t give in and don’t give up!
Go and do some good deeds.
Let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.
Turn on the light.