Christmas Lights

Christmas is a cheery time of year. Mostly. All the lights are pretty. People in our neighborhood put up all different colored lights in all different colored shapes. Driving down any neighborhood street is a treat, very pleasant to look at. A few houses are so busy with decorations, you try not to think about the amount of work involved in lugging that stuff out and hooking it all up and then taking it down? And where do they store all that stuff? Seriously, the garage isn’t that big.

But what is lighting our world? My world. I have to think about who is lighting me from within. What is my motivation for getting up and doing this life every day? What makes me care about other people? What gets me out of myself and my problems, my worries, my aches and pains?

I read John 3 recently in the Message and since my thought pictures weren’t all that encouraging (something about roaches scurrying), I asked my mom about it. My mom said: “As I read it, I thought about Christmas lights…it is easy to be confused about the lights you see, and not know if it is a God-light or not. “

John 3: 19-21″This is the crisis we’re in: God-light streamed into the world, but men and women everywhere ran for the darkness. They went for the darkness because they were not really interested in pleasing God. Everyone who makes a practice of doing evil, addicted to denial and illusion, hates God-light and won’t come near it, fearing a painful exposure. But anyone working and living in truth and reality welcomes God-light so the work can be seen for the God-work it is.”

James 1: 16-18 So, my very dear friends, don’t get thrown off course. Every desirable and beneficial gift comes out of heaven. The gifts are rivers of light cascading down from the Father of Light. There is nothing deceitful in God, nothing two-faced, nothing fickle. He brought us to life using the true Word, showing us off as the crown of all his creatures.

Matthew 5: 13-15 “Here’s another way to put it: You’re here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. We’re going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. If I make you light-bearers, you don’t think I’m going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I’m putting you on a light stand. Now that I’ve put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you’ll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven.

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