‘No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house. “You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden. In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.’
Just wanted to share a quick thought with you today. Read these verses recently in my quiet time and I found myself feeling pretty convicted. Why is that? Jesus says here that “we are the light of the world!” When we are children of God and have a relationship with Jesus where He is literally residing inside of us through His Spirit, that is the light that Jesus has given us access to, it’s the light he has given us access to be.
Where I stood convicted with these verses and where you may find yourself also, if we are the “light of the world,” then why so often in our lives do we live with this light of Jesus in our lives hidden under a basket?
When I first read this I thought, oh okay, Jesus is calling us to share the Gospel and witness to people, that’s what he means by “let your light shine to others.” But when looking deeper, Jesus isn’t limiting what His light shining through us will look like. Witnessing and sharing Jesus with others, “letting our light shine,” that can be seen in every area of our lives, in every action we make and word we speak. I felt convicted because so often I find myself completely consumed with “me.” You know what I mean. I’m worried about this or that going on in my life, or I’m focused on what I want or what I need, so often my mind is revolving around me, myself, and I. Even when I am struggling with something, I am so filled with thoughts and focus being on my weakness and my struggle, I even catch myself praying, “God help me, God do this or God do that.” In the many examples that could be used to why our light is covered up, like it’s hidden under a basket, our own selfishness is definitely one of the biggest to look at.
Think about it, when you’re focused on you, who are you thinking about serving? Who are you thinking about helping, encouraging, or being an example to? Yes, the answer is YOU!! But this is what comes from focusing on self instead of Jesus, we find so often that our minds and hearts are filled with US but not enough JESUS!!!
What happens when we realize, okay, I don’t have what it takes, I need Jesus. Instead of focusing on us and our problems, our focus turns to Jesus where His heart, His love, compassion and service filled attitude pours out all over our lives into others around us. Instead of even saying, “Jesus help me,” believe in faith that Jesus has already helped you, He has saved you, won the victory for you, set you free from all sin and death, so stop falling for the lies of the enemy that’s covering up your light and believe in Jesus!!!! Have faith that He is with you and He has called you for a purpose, a purpose not to live with the Life that’s He’s placed inside of you hidden but He wants His light to be exposed, uncovered, freely working in your life so that others too can witness the awesome and powerful glory of God at work!!!
If you have a light inside of you, why focus on anything that is going to keep it covered up! Let the light shine because in Jesus, you are the light of the world!!!! Stop dragging around like a poor pitiful victim because the light inside of you says otherwise!!! The light inside of you is like a city on hilltop that can’t help but show up and show out to everyone that comes near!!!! This light inside of you is the light of Jesus, the powerful, victorious light of Jesus Christ!!!! Stop walking around like you don’t have a light of life and victory burning inside of you!!! Let that puppy free!!!!! So the world can see how great and awesome Jesus is!!!
Sometimes the biggest thing covering up our light is ourselves. Stop focusing on you and look to Jesus, the One who has done all that you could never do so others can realize too, that this light is brighter than anything they’ve ever seen!!!!
21“You have heard that our ancestors were told, ‘You must not murder. If you commit murder, you are subject to judgment.’ 22 But I say, if you are even angry with someone, Some manuscripts add without cause. you are subject to judgment! If you call someone an idiot, If you say to your brother, you are in danger of being brought before the court. And if you curse someone, if you say, ‘You fool.’ you are in danger of the fires of hell.”
What’s going on everyone! Hope you’re having an awesome day! Man!!! I sure did learn a valuable lesson this past week! Have you ever read a verse and said, “oh that doesn’t apply to me because that’s not something I struggle with at all.” Well, you see these verses above? I read these last week and that’s the thought I had. I mean I’m a generally happy person and I stay pretty positive majority of the time. It really takes a lot to get me fired up and angry about something because of my laid back personality, so I thought, “I don’t really need these verses” and continued to skip right by them.
Then, the next day came. I’m working at a church helping out with the youth ministry there. I have been in charge of this same group of 6th grade boys every week and each week has been a challenge because of how wild they can get. So far, I haven’t experienced anything with this group that really got to me. Well….this night started looking a little bit different. No matter what directions I gave these boys, they refused to listen and continued doing what they wanted to. Even the simplest of directions couldn’t be followed, after watching them disrupt the service that night I had this fire building up inside of me that I had never felt before. I was MAD!!! And I’m not talking about just upset, I was fuming and I had reached my limit with these guys after the constant disrespect I was shown. So throughout the rest of the night I yelled and was more angry with them than I had ever been towards anyone. I hated doing it but I was dealing with anger and I was struggling to keep it inside. I’m not trying to justify my actions by saying all this because I do believe at some points we all need a strong hand of discipline in our lives to steer us down the right path. But the anger that I had sat on me for hours and I acted in ways that was fueled by how mad I was at the situation I faced.
How crazy is it that I sat there and so confidently said, “this verse isn’t for me, that’s not something I struggle with.” Then just a day later, I am struggling with the exact thing that I just overlooked in God’s Word. Jesus was teaching a lesson about anger here in the gospel of Matthew and if I would have really taken His Word in, who knows how differently I could have handled that situation?
This is just a prime example that God showed me that I hope also encourages you today! There isn’t one piece of His Word that doesn’t apply to our lives! There isn’t one piece of Scripture that we don’t desperately need! In the moment we may think, “well, that’s not my struggle, I’m good on this truth, I don’t need it.” In the moment that may look true but at anytime we can find ourselves facing the exact struggle that we just recently disowned as ours. It’s crazy how God works things together like that but what a lesson this is! Whatever verses you come across this week, whether you think they are for you or not, whether you think you need them or not, DIG IN!!!! DO NOT overlook these truths in God’s Word because maybe we don’t need them right now but God wouldn’t put that truth in front of you if He didn’t have a specific reason for it. God’s Word is alive and at work in our lives every single day, it just comes down to us receiving and accepting God’s truths as our greatest need! Every piece of His Word applies to us, is written for us, and is needed by us! Don’t overlook it even if it doesn’t make sense right now, tomorrow may bring a whole new perspective and situation that His Word will be needed more than ever!!!
“Come, and see what love has done…”
I don’t need to say anymore…..just come, check out this song today and see what the love of Jesus has done in your life!!!
‘ Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.’
‘Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. And after fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. And the tempter came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread.” But he answered, “It is written, “‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.'” Then the devil took him to the holy city and set him on the pinnacle of the temple and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down, for it is written, “‘He will command his angels concerning you,’ and “‘On their hands they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone.'” Jesus said to him, “Again it is written, ‘You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.'” Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he said to him, “All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me.” Then Jesus said to him, “Be gone, Satan! For it is written, “‘You shall worship the Lord your God and him only shall you serve.'” Then the devil left him, and behold, angels came and were ministering to him. ‘
Another “old gold” for you today! I hope it’s as much of a blessing to you as it was to me then when it was written and experienced and now!
“Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not of this world. If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would have been fighting, that I might not be delivered over to the Jews. But my kingdom is not from the world.”
Went on a little adventure today with my buddy James and saw God’s beauty and bigness on another level. Pulled out His Word for a random verse, this is what the Lord gave us. When seeing the beauty of the mountains with the sunset in the background, it put the bigness and perfectness of God in a different lens. James said it best, “that view of God puts how small we are and how small our problems are in way better perspective.” God’s Kingdom is not of this world, it’s so much bigger. Sometimes it takes going out, looking around at His creation to see a glimpse of the Kingdom, God’s glory. To think that someone so small and imperfect like us can play a role in bringing glory to a Kingdom that’s so big and so perfect. It blows my mind. It also puts life in perspective. Our belief in Jesus Christ, our faith doesn’t just work in the glimpses of God all around us, it’s in the unseen, the Heavenly Kingdom of God. Putting focus on a Savior and a Kingdom that’s out of this world, seeking that same Savior and believing that He will deliver us out of any situation, change our lives and then bring change to the lives around us. I guess it’s because I’m human but sometimes I forget the role of the relationship I have with Christ and what His presence means in my life. We get caught up in so many little things, problems, and our fleshly desires of this world but sometimes all we need to do is stop, look around, and remember Who’s in control is way bigger than this world or any problem we could ever face.