As the sun sets, the evening sets in and the flicker of fireflies rise slowly from the grass to dance in the gentle summer breeze as children wait with anticipation for the first independence day fireworks to light up the July sky, and with the darkness falling and the first rocket’s red glare emblazoning itself up, up and out across the sky to the surprise and delight of the crowd, I consider what Jesus said,
“You are the light of the world” – Matthew 5
He could have said, “I am the light of the world” or “seek and you will find the light of the world”. But he didn’t.
“You are the light of the world.”
So, when you look around and see a lot of darkness, consider this — what does a flashlight see when you use it to find your way home in the dark? What does a lamp see when you turn it on in a dark room? What does a lighthouse see when it looks out on a stormy sea to bring a sailor home in safety?
If you are looking around and seeing a lot of darkness — big challenges, huge obstacles, overwhelming odds — then you may just be discovering that you are the light of the world.
Before you were there, there was no light. Now you are here, the light has arrived.
You may wish that someone else was the light of the world. You may wish that your challenges were someone else’s challenges. You may look at yourself in the mirror and not like who you see today. But Jesus is declaring this word of blessing over your life,
“You are the light of the world”
Now, I don’t know about you, but I don’t take a flashlight to a noon picnic, but I do take it on an overnight camping trip. Why? Well, clearly I don’t need the extra light under the noonday sun, but out in the woods, with no electricity or street lights to brighten my path, having that flashlight is pretty close to essential when camping.
“You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden.” – Matthew 5
It’s time to stop allowing the presence of darkness to keep you from turning on your light. You were designed to be a light for dark places. You are called. You are chosen. You are a light for the world.
By the power of God’s grace, sin has no more power over you. You are a light to dispel the darkness.
“But Steve, you don’t understand, my light is dark, it’s gone out, I don’t think I have anything to offer here. I’m just as challenged as everyone else. In fact, between you and me, this particular situation is uniquely challenging for me given my past. I really just don’t think I have anything to bring in this case. How can you say I’M the light of the world?”
If you will accept the call to be the light of the world, God is going to light up your life as you light up the world.
It’s a win, win.
When you change your mind about the obstacles that face you, when you realize that God is bigger, more capable and more powerful than any setback, any disease, any conflict, any challenge you may be facing — then the fear and the doubt start to pale in the light that God is bringing for you, offering to you, and shining through you.
“You are the light of the world”
Say it with me,
“I am the light of the world. Darkness has no power over me. I’m not afraid of the dark, the darkness is afraid of me! My obstacles are opportunities. My challenges are callings. My setbacks are the foundations for the overwhelming victory that God has in store for me. I am a light for dark places”
When Jesus said, “You are the light of the world” it wasn’t because he needed you to go on a picnic under the noonday sun. Jesus said, “You are the light of the world” as a call to embrace your opportunities to walk through the dark, to bring life to the lost and the broken, to heal the sick and the dysfunctional, to restore the defeated and the abused, to bring salvation by the power of God to everyone you can reach with the light of grace, peace, joy, and love.
So, get up and get out there. Walk boldly knowing that where God be for you, none dare be against you. Knowing that God is bigger than any situation, any issue, any problem, any addiction, any history, any challenge — God is bigger than it all and God has declared that you are His light for the world. You are the instrument. You are the tool. You are the leader. You are the chosen one. You can make a difference as you embrace your destiny, you are the light of the world.
And the darkness will not be able to stand against it.
Or, as Katy Perry said,
“You just gotta ignite, the light, and let it shine
Just own the night like the fourth of July
‘Cause baby you’re a firework
Come on, show ’em what you’re worth
Make ’em go “Oh, oh, oh”
As you shoot across the sky-y-y”