Monday, November 7

This Little Light Of Mine

Read Matthew 12:28-34

My 2 year old son blew slobber on his one pointer finger while intermittently singing an indistinguishable tune. It took me a few moments to realize he was trying to do the Sunday School song, "This Little Light of Mine."

This little light of mine. 

I'm gonna let it shine. 

Let it shine, let it shine all the time.

The raised pointed finger symbolizes our "light" and one verse says, "don't let Satan blow it out, I'm gonna to let it shine." Hence my baby's slobbering blowing on his finger.

Being a "light" is not just for little kids singing familiar Sunday School songs. As grown up Christians need to shine too.

Matthew 5:14-16 says, “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."

A newspaper article on Friday described a mailman named Paul who shines in his community. Interrestingly enough, the author did not reference this man's faith, that he believes in God, or that he attends church faithfully every week. I know of Paul's testimony because he is my brother-in-law, but those who meet him on his route know him as simply a friendly guy who delivers mail.

".... Sure, he delivered the mail. But he also called in a house fire in an empty home. He checked up on older residents who hadn't been picking up their bills and letters. Once, he even chased a thief across half a dozen backyards, resulting in an arrest. He became, as really great mailmen do, the true connector across fences, the guy in blue who communicates what is really going on in a neighborhood.

.... Paul has been a great source of information in times of want and a great friend in times of need. He's shared toddler care tricks and restaurant tips and, oh yes, he also delivers the mail. 
I'm not sure how he ever gets through his route because he'll stop and chat with people like me who are stuck at home all day working remotely and caring for the wee ones and yearning for some real face-to-face interaction. 
There is a reason writer David Brin made the hero of his post-apocalyptic novel a postman.

.... People talk a lot about the values of community. Increasingly, the communities that get talked about are online, where you either like something or you're not even connected to it. I've moved often in those worlds, and I'm here to say that there are no links or likes or fan pages or comment reply buttons that can replace the real joy of knowing what is going on with the people in your actual living, breathing life." *

It's easy to get freaked out when we are called to be witnesses for Jesus. Do you break out in a cold sweat when you think you may need to tell a non-believer about your faith? Being a light in the world doesn't need to be nerve wracking. Being a light means to live in a way that shows God's love.

  • Be friendly, "be devoted to one another in brotherly/sisterly love," Romans 12:9-10.

  • Show kindness, "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness...", Galatians 5:22.

  • Be considerate, "Cloth yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness," Colossians 3:12.

  • Live at peace with those around you, "to lead a quiet life and mind your own business," I Thessalonians 4:11.

  • Work hard, "Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart as working for the Lord," Colossians 3:23.

  • Love your neighbor, "Love the Lord your God with all your heart... and love your neighbor as yourself," Mark 12:30-31.

The mailman in the newspaper article has the opportunity to show God's love to many as he travels door to door to door. If you are like me, you don't come in contact with so many people. Most days it is just me and the kids at home. How can I be light when I don't get to interact with anyone? Saying we don't come in contact with enough people is just an excuse. We can be lights in our home to children who watch our every move and to those we encounter on a busy morning of Mommy-errands and to a neighbor who might just need a "hello" wave and smile from across the street.

The world is a cold, dark place. We will shine brightly for Jesus when we live His love. The warmth will be contagious and those around us will know we have something they need: a personal relationship with Jesus. Let's think of ways to SHINE today.

This little light of mine, I'm gonna let it shine, let it shine, all the time.

*Read the full article by Emily Grosvenor from the Statesman Journal by clicking here.

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