“You are the light of the world…”
This weekend I posted a comment on Facebook that has been rattling around in my head ever since. My daughter was watching a YouTube video called, “The Problem with Christian Bands” (go ahead, click the link, it’s worth watching, or just scroll down to the end of this post to watch it). At about the 2:13 mark in the video the young man says, “If you’re a Christian and I spend the whole day with you and can’t tell that you’re a Christian or not, you’re doing it wrong… Even if I’m completely oblivious I should notice some kind of difference.”
I don’t think this means that you should go around telling everyone “I’m a Christian, I’m a Christian” but the fact that you are a believer in a risen Savior should make a difference in how you relate to the world.
Look at it this way:
When the words of the world would toss you about on the waves of trouble, are you able are you able to stand firm in the Word of God because you have read the Scriptures daily?
When the way of the world is stress and anxiety over what has happened and what may happen next, a desperate grabbing for security and provision, are you able to rest in the fact that you have laid your cares before the throne of God and walk confidently in the knowledge that He will provide and see to every need?
When the world would tell you that we are only here by chance and there is no greater purpose in life, are you able to face each day with purpose and joy knowing that God has created you for this particular time and place, and has called you to find joy in glorifying Him?
When the world would have you believe that you are the product of your genetic coding and predisposed by the conditions of your upbringing, do you rejoice in the Savior who has broken the power of sin, the Sprit who brings new life, and a Heavenly Father who has called you to be His own from before the beginning of time?
When the world would tell you that nothing in life is ever free and you have to look out for yourself, do you rest in the grace of God in Jesus Christ and in thanksgiving and praise place others before yourself and look for every opportunity to give of yourself in love?
When the world celebrates “self” and tells you to promote yourself, to improve your image, to achieve and make yourself stand out for “one shining moment,” are you content in the assurance that God has called you His child, and only too happy to point to the goodness, the righteousness, the love, the supremacy of Christ our Savior?
This isn’t an “in your face,” obnoxious kind of Christianity – but rather a faith that permeates a room like a bouquet of fragrant flowers. Jesus said “You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden… Let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.”
You can’t hide the fact that you are a Christian and still be a Christian. You can’t receive the joy of the Lord then cover it up so as not to offend or repel your friends (as if true and pure joy could ever be offensive or repulsive). Living by faith the Christian life should look different from living according to the way of the world, even if that way is by all appearances noble and good.
Friends, do those around you know you are a child of God, a follower of Christ? Do you bring the light of faith, the radiance of joy, the glow of peace into a world darkened by sin and despair? Don’t hide your light – that’s doing it wrong – but let it shine for all to see.