Theft! Murder! Rape! Lies! Racism! Infidelity! Selfishness! Corrupt politicians! It seems to me like the world has gone crazy and not in a good way.
When I think of the world around me, the word that comes to mind is darkness. It is a dark and unkind place we live in. People with evil ambitions are all around us. Their greatest desire is to steal, kill and destroy. Adultery and gruesome deeds are celebrated in the media today. In many movies and series the criminal is the hero and the couple that have just met, jump into bed. Innocent entertainment is really scarce. It is frightening how darkness has corrupted our society.
What hope is there for us in this dark world? Where will this madness take us if it is not stopped? Is it even possible for it to end? I believe there is hope. There is a way to destroy darkness. The answer is light. You simply switch on the light. You don’t switch off the black light but rather switch on the white light. You see, we tend to think of darkness as something but in reality it is the absence of something. Darkness exists when there is no light.
Light on the other hand is something. Scientists call it photons. Light can be measured because it is something. When you switch on a light, darkness has to go.
The real Light was born two thousand years ago in a manger. The Bible declares that Jesus is the light of the world. Unfortunately the world rejected it. Eleven disciples carried that light further and later some men like Paul and Silas also became light bearers. The world hated them and tried to extinguish the light, but the light remained. The light burned brightly throughout the ages in spite of tyrants and evil people who hated it.
So what are we to do with this light today? Will we be faithful with the light that was given to us, just as the apostles were in ancient times? And how exactly am I to shine this light in this dark world? How do I shine it at my work or my neighborhood? How do I shine it at school or in my marriage?
I believe the answer is found in the great commandment. “Jesus replied: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself.’” – Matthew 22:37-39
The first step to shine the light is to love the light. How would you shine the light if you don’t even like it? You should develop a passionate love for Jesus and allow Him to shine His light in your heart.
Secondly we must love others as ourselves. Start with the people that are closest to you: you spouse, your children. Then go further: your family and friends, then your colleagues at work and your brothers and sisters at church, commit to really love them. Lastly we have to love this dark world – not the darkness itself but the people that are trapped in that darkness. They will most probably hate you for it, but Jesus showed us the standard. We are to love everybody in spite of their attitude towards us.
Let us be like Jesus and shine His light everywhere.