When we were in South Mississippi we lived in a home that was surrounded by acres and acres of National Forrest. During the summer months, after the children went to bed my husband and I would love to take evening swims. In the darkness of the night we would look into the heavens at the thousands of stars shining so bright. The contrast of the stars against the blanket of darkness was striking. This is how I picture the Christian’s life. We let our light shine before men in an extremely dark world.
It is certainly dark times. Today’s headlines, like all others, include stories of war, scandals, terrorism, and murder. One story that depicts the nature of our world in such a clear fashion is this one. A Chinese baby boy is rescued alive after being flushed away. I am a mother. The thought of a mom giving birth to a child and then being able to take that child and flush it down the toilet as human waste or garbage is inconceivable. I can’t even comprehend the cruel heart that could do such a thing, other than the fact that we are told in Jeremiah that the heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked (Jer 17:9) and that one of the characteristic of the ungodly is being “without natural affection” (Rom 1:31, 2 Tim 3:3).
So these gloriously dark times are grand opportunities to shine.
Look at how Daniel describes the wise. “And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever,” Daniel 12:3.
That right! You are a star!
At least those with heavenly wisdom, who point others to God, shine as stars in the darkness!
But what happens to the stars when the sun comes out?
They fade away.
John the Baptist understood this concept. He said, “He must increase, but I must decrease,” John 3:30.
Our purpose as light in the darkness has never been to point others to ourselves. We don’t shine for our glory. We point others to God, for His glory. Jesus told his disciples, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven,” Matthew 5:16.
We shine in this dark world so that others are pointed to our heavenly Father. But one glorious day, the Son whose “countenance was as the sun,” (Rev 1:16) will return and all darkness will be driven away for all eternity.
Until that day, dear Christian friend, keep shinning!