2020-04-16 Let That Light Shine In!

“If you know these things,
blessed are you if you do them.”
John 13:17

Some friends and I were talking the other day, and the one guy commented about a time in his life that he shared the gospel regularly. He recalled how he asked the Lord each day to provide him with one person to share the gospel with. Of course, God obliged. The interesting thing, he noted, was that this was a particularly good period in his life. The Lord blessed him with the things that money can’t buy.

I then shared how I have noticed that since I have been so intentional about sharing the gospel of late, I haven’t been troubled by my besetting sin. Oh, sure, from time to time it seems to flare up to see if it might be welcomed; but for the most part, it’s subsided. I think there is a correlation. Not only that, but I have a great sense of peace and contentment in this time of storm.

It was a good conversation.

My message probably gets old, but it’s consistent. It starts as my morning devotion to get my head in the game. This is the verse that my blog is based on:

2 Corinthians 4:6 For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

Prior to my salvation, my heart was dark, far darker than I can imagine. But God had mercy on me and gave it light. Why? He did it for a purpose: to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God. His light is meant to shine OUT of us. HIS light, not OUR light. Any light we have is HIS. And all that is through the face of Jesus. Our Lord is personal. He has a face. He is alive.

Our light is meant to shine.

Luke 11:33-36 “No one after lighting a lamp puts it in a cellar or under a basket, but on a stand, so that those who enter may see the light. You eye is the lamp of your body. When your eye is healthy your whole body is full of light, but when it is bad, your body is full of darkness. Therefore be careful lest the light in you be darkness. If then your whole body is full of light, having no part dark, it will be wholly bright, as when a lamp with its rays gives you light.”

But my heart still has dark places. Combine that with the world’s distractions and Satan’s temptation, and God’s light can get pretty dim. Is it any wonder that I am miserable at times? His light is meant to shine, but I wear myself out trying to keep it covered. How utterly foolish I am at times!

It takes work to keep the light uncovered. Even though I am saved, I revert back to my evil ways unless I am intentional to keep the light shining bright. That’s why Jesus says, “If you know these things, you are blessed if you do them.” He’s not going to bless me when I am working against him. I think that’s common sense. On the other hand, it proves itself that I will enjoy the things that money can’t buy if I work with him – even while the storm rages all around me.

How do I work with him? Folks, you all know that peace and joy you have when you are talking about Jesus with a group of like-minded believers. It’s awesome! But we end our conversations and put the basket over our light and go on with our lives. Sure, the light lingers, but it eventually fades away as time goes on. We may go back to this group, maybe it’s on a Sunday, and take the basket off again; and we feel good. Over and over, we play this out, but we eventually will end up in a slump. These are really hard to get out of.

Imagine, if you will, if we didn’t put that basket over our light. Imagine if we kept up our conversation about Jesus with others, just as if they were our “safe” friends. Do you suppose God would bless that? Of course, he would! Then why don’t we? I maintain that we are ashamed of the gospel. Yes, that’s right. I know I am, more often than I care to admit.

Luke 9:23-27 And he said to all, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it. For what does it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses or forfeits himself? For whoever is ashamed of me and of my words, of him will the Son of Man be ashamed when he comes in his glory and the glory of the Father and of the holy angels. But I tell you truly, there are some standing here who will not taste death until they see the kingdom of God.”

Now, I don’t believe the bible teaches that we can lose genuine salvation. However, God will certainly correct us with his staff and rod and even a bridle and bit, if necessary. He also blesses and withholds blessings. Certainly, he will discipline us (Hebrews 12:5-12). But, the warning in Luke 9 should still be concerning to believers. Very concerning.

Even so, you are all probably familiar with the saying, “Preach the gospel always, and, if necessary, use words.” Good luck with that. The reason people don’t want to use words is because they are ashamed. Just last night, I watched a clip from Wretched Radio on this: https://www.facebook.com/WretchedNetwork/videos/667454597351135/

Anyway, I don’t mean to harp on this. Much better would it be to enjoy the blessings of sharing the gospel by openly talking about Jesus everywhere you go and with whomever you are with than to put the basket over God’s light.

Don’t you think?

Father, cast off everything about me that covers your light! Amen!

Copyright © 2021 Scott Powers

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