Shine!

On these short days before Christmas,the early darkness accentuates the light:

*Twinkling Starlight
*Mellow Moonlight
*Flickering Candlelight
*Sparkling Christmas lights
*Shining Car lights
*Beaming Torch light
*Glowing Firelight

Light also beams through the Bible, from Genesis to Revelation. Light dispelling darkness is a bright theme shining in God’s epic story.

‘In the beginning,at the dawn of time, God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light’ (Genesis 1:3 NIV)

And,at the setting of time, in the eternal city of God,’the city has no need of sun or moon, for the glory of God illuminates the city, and the Lamb is its light. (Revelation 21:23 NLT)

These words are an echo of Isaiah’s prophecy written hundreds of years before:
‘The sun will no more be your light by day, nor will the brightness of the moon shine on you, for the Lord will be your everlasting light, and your God will be your glory. Your sun will never set again, and your moon will wane no more; the Lord will be your everlasting light, and your days of sorrow will end. ‘(Isaiah 60:19, 20 NIV)

Life-Giving Loving Light is the essence of our God:
‘You’re a fountain of cascading light, and you open our eyes to light. (Psalm 36:9 MSG)

God’s gifts of grace & blessings on our lives are also portrayed as light:’Every desirable and beneficial gift comes out of heaven. The gifts are rivers of light cascading down from the Father of Light.’
(James 1:16 MSG)

In between today & 25th Dec we will be reminded by mini wise men in nativity plays that bright starlight led VIPs from the East to the manger- to worship the Jesus, the Light of the world.

Yet, as we step into December our social calendars fill up, & the pace of daily life speeds up to keep up with our schedule, we can fail to appreciate the difference that this Light sent from Heaven has made in our hearts, our home & our world.

Even we who are Christians {followers of the Life-Giving Light} can be tainted by our postmodern world’s mangled view of Christmas. We can fail to grasp the enormity of the truth that this Baby beamed from the translucent Light of Heaven was born to defeat & dispel darkness.

‘The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it.'(John 1:5 NLT)

In the opening chapter of Dr Luke’s Gospel, Zechariah burst into song after months of silence. He concluded:
‘Through the heartfelt mercies of our God, God’s Sunrise will break in upon us, Shining on those in the darkness, those sitting in the shadow of death, Then showing us the way, one foot at a time, down the path of peace. (Luke 1:78&79 MSG)

Three decades later, Jesus proclaimed, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” (John 8:12 NIV)

He said, ‘I have come as a light to shine in this dark world, so that all who put their trust in me will no longer remain in the dark.’ (John 12:46 NLT)

If we trust in Jesus, the Ultimate Source of light, we become light-bearers in this dark world for Him:
Jesus said,“Believe in the light while you have the light, so that you may become children of light.” (John 12:36 NIV)

‘For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth) and find out what pleases the Lord. Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them.’ (Ephesians 5:8-11 NIV)

Paul urged Jesus’ followers (like us) to ‘Shine like stars in the universe as you hold out the word of life’ (Philippians 2:15-NIV) & ‘Carry the light-giving message into the universe’
(Phil 2:15-The Message)

Jesus the Light of the world said,“Here’s another way to put it: You’re here to be light, bringing out the God-colours in the world.” (Matthew 5:14 MSG)

For God, who said, “Let there be light in the darkness,” has made this light shine in our hearts so we could know the glory of God that is seen in the face of Jesus Christ. We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves.’
(2 Corinthians 4:6, 7 NLT)

If we have trusted Him as the only True Light to shine &redeem the darkness of sin in our lives, then the all powerful Life-Giving, Loving Light of God’s Spirit lives at the core of our messy lives!

We need to shine in the darkness & walk in the light! This means spending ourselves, to illuminate the darkness:
‘If you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like the noonday.’ (Isaiah 58:10 NIV)

Light gives way to light. It only takes one candle to dispel the deep darkness of a cavern.

‘We are only the lightbulbs, & our job is just to remain screwed in!’ (Desmond Tutu)

‘So, Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you. See, darkness covers the earth and thick darkness is over the peoples, but the Lord rises upon you and his glory appears over you.’
(Isaiah 60:1, 2 NIV)

Blessings,

Ruth x

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