The Line Between Light and Dark

Sun Mountain-1

Light meets dark

This picture is difficult to understand because there is nothing to help you align yourself as to the scene. Life is like this picture, we need something to help us in making sense of what is happening. A passage in Isaiah speaks to God meeting our need:

“See, I lay a stone in Zion,
a tested stone,
a precious cornerstone for a sure foundation;
the one who trusts will never be dismayed.
I will make justice the measuring line
and righteousness the plumb line;” Isaiah 28:16-17

Isaiah is prophesying about a coming Messiah, who will be our foundation and cornerstone. Through the Messiah, life will not dismay us, but in Him we will gain understanding and meaning for all that happens. I desperately need help, to know up from down, right from wrong, and good from bad. In Jesus, God has given me a cornerstone for measuring and understanding life.

I have provided two additional photographs below for better orientation. They are from the same scene, but a slightly different direction to provide context.

Sun Mountain-2

Shades of snow

Sun Mountain-3

Valley fog and snow covered ridge

These photographs were taken near Sun Mountain Lodge in Winthrop WA. The first is looking up at a snow covered ridge, shrouded by a cloud. The second includes the side hill and a snow covered pine tree, and the third a view of the mountain in the distance as the cloud lifted.

Light of Life

morning light
The right light makes this photograph beautiful. It is the same for our life.

“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

Later in the chapter Jesus explains what He means by, “I am the light of the world.”

“Even if I testify on my own behalf, my testimony is valid, for I know where I came from and where I am going. But you have no idea where I come from or where I am going. John 8:14

I struggle with that fact all the time. When traveling I hate to ask for directions, because then I have to admit I do not know what way is right. It is the same for the right way to go in life.

With all the debate about how to stop the mass killings, how to deal with immigration, what to do with millions of refugees, we need to admit we don’t know where we are going, and follow the light of the world.

He has showed you, O man, what is good.
And what does the Lord require of you?
To act justly and to love mercy
and to walk humbly with your God. Micah 6:8

A Path to the Light

A path to the Light

A path to the Light

Direct me in the path of your commands,
for there I find delight.
Turn my heart toward your statutes
and not toward selfish gain.
Turn my eyes away from worthless things;
preserve my life according to your word. (Psalm 119:35-37)

What a wonderful prayer God has given me to pray. God knows I am easily caught up in the pursuit of money, power, fame, and other such things. But in the end they contain nothing of value. So God has illuminated a path that leads me to true treasure. This section of Psalm 119 ends with:

How I long for your precepts!
Preserve my life in your righteousness. (Psalm 119:40)

It states here that life is found in the goodness and rightness of God. So I pray with the psalmist that I might follow the path to the true light of life.

Peace and Quiet

PeaceI have stilled and quieted my soul  (Psalm 131:2)

I cannot do this alone.

I need someone stronger than my fears.

I need someone to take away my gnawing guilt.

I need someone to forgive and remove my regret,

To quiet my shame.

Someone to quell the ugliness I have seen.

Some one who will lead me by quiet waters,

To restore my soul to innocence.

I need the Good Shepherd, the Prince of Peace.

The Eyes of God

On a medical mission to Mariupol, Ukraine our host church took us to the Sea of Azov for a relaxing picnic. A little ways up the coast stood the towering smoke stacks of a steel mill. The small public picnic area had no caretaker so litter covered the grounds. Our hosts apologized for the mess but in this industrial city it was all they had. We then stood in a large circle holding hands seeking God’s blessing on the food. After the prayer, I opened my eyes, the sun filtered through the trees giving a golden glow to everything and I took this picture. Some of the people by me asked why I wasted time taking a picture of a trash strewn scene. But that is not what I saw, for a moment it sparkled with light. An epiphany of how God saw the people of Mariupol, how He saw me. Not with all the trash we have carelessly littered throughout our lives, but with the light of Jesus transforming us into beauty beyond our wildest dreams.

1 Corinthians 13:12-27

Mariupol, Ukraine

Mariupol currently is caught in conflict. Pray for the church in Eastern Ukraine.