Light Has Come

Feels dark sometimes, doesn’t it?  Feels like there is darkness in the world, darkness in ourselves, darkness all over.  In the news, in our communities, all over.  It just feels dark sometimes.

Every morning I read and reflect from the Morning Office, which gives a listing of an Old Testament, New Testament, and Gospel Lesson (or reading) for the day.  Between those passages, you can read other acts of worship or readings of scripture.  And one of those daily readings is from Isaiah.  And that reading jumped out to me today.  It’s from Isaiah 60: 1-3:

1 Arise, shine; for your light has come,
and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you.
2 For darkness shall cover the earth,
and thick darkness the peoples;
but the Lord will arise upon you,
and his glory will appear over you.
3 Nations shall come to your light,
and kings to the brightness of your dawn.

sunriseArise.  Shine.  Light has come.  Darkness covers the earth, thick darkness over the people.

Yeah, that’s how it feels sometimes, huh?  Dark.  Thick darkness.  A hopeless darkness.  Things are bad and they aren’t getting better.  Yeah, we feel that sometimes.

So that’s why I think it’s cool that every day, there is this reading.  Every day, we are reminded that light has come.  Every day we are reminded that as dark as the darkness is, the light is brighter.  The light is stronger.  The light is more powerful.

The light is stronger than the dark.  In our world.  In our souls.  In all that is happening.

Don’t given into the lie that darkness wins or is great than the light.  It is is not.  Light has come.  Light wins.  Light brings hope, peace, power, and light.

Feel the light today.  I think of the words of Psalm 139:12:

even the darkness is not dark to you;
the night is as bright as the day,
for darkness is as light to you.

That is true, because even in the darkness, God is there, we can’t flee from His presence.  And if He is there, then the darkness will be driven out.  Hope hope today.  God is good.  Trust in Him.  Cling to light.  And know that no matter how dark it seems, His light has come.

If you’d like to receive these thoughts by email, be sure to click here and join my email devotional group!

Shine the Light

Well, it’s Monday. I don’t know when you read this. It could be early in the morning before you leave for work or school. You could be reading in the drop off line on your phone. Perhaps from your computer at work. Or maybe even tonight before bed.

I don’t know when you read it. But I know that whenever you do read it, you have some sort of task ahead of ahead of you. Something you have to do; something you have to face.

And sometimes we just need a little extra kick to get over the hump. Well, this morning I was reading in Philippians 2: 14-16. Listen to what it says:

Do all things without grumbling or disputing, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast to the word of life, so that in the day of Christ I may be proud that I did not run in vain or labor in vain.

flat,550x550,075,f.u3Through your actions, through your words, through your faith, you are going to be a light. You are going to shine for all to see. In a world full of darkness, you are going to be a light to someone today.

You are. Really, you are. You are going to be a light today. You are going to shine for Jesus today. You are going to point someone to Jesus today.

Now, you may not be perfect; you may not do it perfect, but you have that chance. And you know what else?

God has confidence in you. He does. That’s He’s sending you out. That’s why He’s putting you where He’s putting you. That’s why you are where you are. Not just for “you” but for “Him.”

You can do it. Really, you can. You can do it. You can shine for Him. You can point to Him. You can be that light in the darkness today.

You can change someone’s world today.

Someone changed your life. Today, you have the shot, through Jesus, to change someone’s life yourself. Today, let Jesus shine through you.

Don’t forget, you can click here to download Asbury’s mobile app and read these devotionals, as well as listen to my sermons on your smart phones, and you thought our app, you can now watch our worship services from Asbury too!

Let the Light Shine

light1One of the things that we can be tempted to do as Christians is keep the light of Christ to ourselves.  It can be a lot easier to stay around, to hang around, to be around only Christians.

Because when we only stay around Christians, we know that people will share our values. They will share our desires. We know that they will like to do what we do, and will, in most ways, think like we think.

Only being around other Christians is safe.  It is comfortable.  It is more peaceful for us. And, truth be told, we really do need to make sure that our closest, most trusted friend are people that we can count on, and that will help us be the people that God wants us to be.

But, that said, if we only are around Christians, then how will people know the Good News of Jesus Christ.  Listen to what Paul says today in 2 Corinthians 4: 4-6:

In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.For what we proclaim is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, with ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. 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.

Let the light shine in the darkness.  We have to take the light of Christ into the world, if we want to make a difference.  Let me say that again.  We have to take the light of Christ into the world if we want to make a difference. We have to form relationships. We have to become friends. We have to go where “they” are, and take Jesus with us.

That doesn’t necessarily mean we have to go and start preaching.  What it does mean is this. We have to go and form relationships.  We have to go and be friendly.   We have to go and take that love of Jesus, that’s inside of us, and love them in the same way.

Today, no matter where you are, or where you find yourself, let that light of Christ shine through you.

Don’t forget, you can click here to download Asbury’s mobile app and read these devotionals, as well as listen to my sermons on your smart phones.

Shine Bright

Today you have a chance to make a difference.  Today, you have a chance to shine bright the love of Christ.  Today, with His spirit within you, you have the chance, the moment, the ability to make a huge difference for the kingdom.

Today, you can shine bright the light of Christ with all that you do.

Listen to what it says today in Luke 8: 16-18:

“No one after lighting a lamp covers it with a jar or puts it under a bed, but puts it on a stand, so that those who enter may see the light. For nothing is hidden that will not be made manifest, nor is anything secret that will not be known and come to light. Take care then how you hear, for to the one who has, more will be given, and from the one who has not, even what he thinks that he has will be taken away.”

6568967-bright-light-bulb-standing-isolated-over-a-black-backgroundIt says here, no one, when they have this light, will hide it. They won’t put in a jar or under the bed, but they will put it out for everyone to see.  The will place this light in a place where everyone can see it and live into it.

So is it with the light of Christ within us.  If we know His grace, have tasted His mercy, felt His power, experienced His love in our souls, we can’t hide it.  We can’t ignore it. We can’t pretend like it’s not there.  We can’t.

Don’t hide that light.  Let it shine in your hearts and let it shine in your lives.

Let His light shine today in our words.  In our actions.  In our relationships.  In all that we are, all that we do.  Let it shine.

For His life in our lives, it will make all difference in our life, and in the life of others.

Today, you’ve been give life, been given light.  Let it shine.

Don’t forget, you can click here to download Asbury’s mobile app and read these devotionals, as well as listen to my sermons on your smart phones.

A Light has Come

lightI’ve been reading and talking a lot about darkness recently. Part of was the text that I preached from Sunday was John 1, which talked about The Light coming, and how it shines in the darkness.

And the darkness has not overcome it.

Remember y’all, that darkness will not overcome the light. It’s not going to happen. Light will win in the end.

With all that’s happened in the world in the last week, it’s easy to think that the darkness is going to win.

It’s not. Light wins.

Today, we see this passage that we all know so well from Isaiah. Listen to what it says in Isaiah 9:2, 6-7:

The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who dwelt in a land of deep darkness, on them has light shined.For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and of peace there will be no end, on the throne of David and over his kingdom, to establish it and to uphold it with justice and with righteousness from this time forth and forevermore. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this.

The people in darkness have seen a great light. Light has shown on them.

The darkness has fled. It is gone. It has vanished.

Light has come.

Well, what is this light?

Isaiah continues. To us, a child is born. A son is given. He is wonderful counselor, might God.

Prince of Peace.

He is the Lord.

He is Jesus.

No matter what darkness you are waking in today, let His light shine on you. And in you.

Maybe it’s the darkness of sadness over Newton.

Maybe it’s the darkness of worry over your own children.

Maybe it’s the darkness of depression.

Of fear.

Of worry.

Of brokenness.

No matter what darkness you are in right now, a light has come. A light as shown.
Let it shine in your life. Let it shine through your life.

Let it drive out the darkness in you. Let it shine out the darkness through you.

Don’t forget, you can click here to download Asbury’s mobile app and read these devotionals, as well as listen to my sermons on your smart phones.

Questions

We should live our lives in a way that raise questions.

We should live our lives in a way that people that aren’t Christian wonder, what’s the deal with them? Why do they live the way that they live? Why do they do what they do? Why do they act the way that they act?

Today, in 1 Peter 3:15, we are told that our lives should raise these questions in others:

but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect,

The light of Jesus should shine though us in such a way that it makes a difference. The grace of Jesus should just radiate out of us. The power of God should be apparent in our lives for all to see.

We shouldn’t have to go around announcing to people that we are Christians.

Our clothes shouldn’t be the the only thing that proclaims that we are Christian. Our music shouldn’t be the the only thing that proclaims that we are Christian. The symbols on our cars shouldn’t be the the only thing that proclaims that we are Christian.

Our lives must proclaim that we are Christians.

Our lives must produce questions in others.

And, we should always be ready to answer these questions; with hope, with gentleness; with respect.

Today, may our lives raise questions in others. And may give an answer to those questions – Jesus.