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