"Let the light of your face shine upon us, O LORD" Psalm 4:6
"The LORD is my light and my salvation" Psalm 27:1
"You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house." Matthew 5:14,15
There are so many times in God's word where the light and darkness are contrasted, where God or His son, Jesus is referred to as light - bright light. Paul "...saw a light from heaven, brighter than the sun..." (Acts 26:13) that blinded him when Jesus spoke to him on the road to Damascus.
God is light...and we are His reflectors.
In the bible we read of accounts where God showed himself and it was always brilliant. Other than those times when God came down and showed us a bit of Himself (just enough so that we could handle it) His light is reflected to the world through us. All of those that wear His son's name - Christians - reflect His light to a dark world.
I've known this all of my life. In fact it's one of the first things you are taught as a child about God. Don't believe me? Ask a child to sing a couple bible songs and after "Jesus Loves Me" and "Jesus Love the Little Children", you will probably hear "This Little Light of Mine". We are taught as children that it's our mission in life (OK, so the kids don't understand that it's a mission - but it is) to let our light shine "all around the neighborhood" (which is a child's understanding of the world). So, I get the light thing - I've understood it all of my life - or have I?
When you think about that song you envision a candle because if you also go through the motions you make a candle with your finger. That's a great illustration - for a child.
However, a candle radiates light from it's own source of power, and one candle is not really all that bright. My point here is not to poke holes at the idea of a light or a lantern....
It occurred to me yesterday that we are actually reflectors of God's light. If you take a mirror, a shiny piece of metal or any other object that reflects light and put it in a dark room what do you get? A dark room. However, just take a light source (like a flashlight or the sun) and point it at the reflector it can cast light around the room. If you have ever seen the movie "The Mummy", Evelyn Carnahan (the librarian looking for the mummy) showed how the Egyptians used mirrors to illuminate dark rooms. I don't have any idea if this is based on any reality, but it looked really cool in the movie.
The source of the light that we shine to the world is from God, it is His light and the only way the world will see it is through us. Here comes the part that hit me yesterday...
Every "reflector" is different. Every Christian that reflects God's light reflects it in a different way. There is no way to take God's perfect light and transfer it through us - imperfect - and it not look a bit different. It's just not possible. Every bit of God's light on this earth is reflected through imperfect people. There was only one exception and that was when God sent His perfect son, Jesus to walk among us and reflect His light - perfectly.
When I first thought about this I thought I must be missing something. Am I saying that God's light on earth is not perfect? No. His light is perfect, but He designed it to be shown (reflected from) through us - imperfect children of His. Does that really make sense?
Of course it does!
Different light catches different people...er...differently. When God's light reflects off of one person it looks a little different than when it reflects off another - but it's still His light. The beauty of this - one more evidence of His perfect design - is that it brings more people to Him! Each child of His that walks this earth reflects His light in different ways because each person on this earth is different - individual reflections bring INDIVIDUALS to HIM.
More on this later....