By Your light we see light.
We see Jesus. Who is,
… the light of the world. [And] Whoever follows [him] will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life. (John 8:12)
Great news, right?! We no longer have to walk in darkness if we walk with Jesus. And yet, we humans very often prefer the darkness, don’t we? Not necessarily the devious darkness. No, I’m talking more of a darkened knowledge, void of God’s input on whatever is truly the matter in any given moment.
And, I don’t really understand why we prefer to live in this type of darkness, except that our sin nature does make us want to be in total control. Be our own boss. Our own god. Do life ourselves… all by ourselves, without needing anyone else. Like a two year old that yells, “I do it!” Or, my teenager, who often curtly points out, “I know what I’m doing. You don’t need to tell me!”
And this world we live in really is a Pick-Yourself-Up-By-Your-Own-Bootstraps kinda world. The self-made man quality is very much expected and always celebrated, while neediness and limited abilities are, more often than not, frowned upon.
And so, there’s a constant battle happening between ourselves and God. Thinking we know enough or better and don’t need to ask, wait, or check in with Him.
While God’s just there. Waiting on us to ask, wait upon, or check in with Him.
But, we just don’t. Or, really, it’s more like we simply won’t.
And, life keeps tripping us up. Circumstances overwhelm us. Negative thoughts overtake us. Pressures pile up and push against us. As do other people. We feel the strain and run away or push hard back, instead of running towards and leaning harder into God.
Yet, by His light we see light.
The thing is, we could truly see. We could even see things we wouldn’t ordinarily see. We could actually understand things we could never understand on our own. We could get God’s vision and the mind of Christ on any matter in a matter of moments. And by His Light, we could know what we could never know. And we could live in perfect peace because of this Light of Life.
But we prefer the darkness because we’d prefer not to be in need (thank you very much!), so we just keep mentally, spiritually, and emotionally running away from God to preserve our pride and small, self-controlled lives.
Though, not exactly all alone, because we just love to talk things to death and encourage each other with super insightful wisdom, do we not? Maybe a tiny bit? I’m thinking, yeah. And, yeah, this assessment may also be a tiny bit cruel, but I feel this deep down, because I’ve lived this way for so long.
Yet, I do wonder… maybe we’re simply comfortable living in this spiritual darkness because our lives really are lived out overall in a very darkened state. Not one of us knows what will happen in this lifetime, let alone the next year or month or day or even minute. We are blind to that future. Even the brightest among us.
What’s more, we can’t possibly be able to understand why certain things that happen, happen as they do. Even with all human wisdom and reasoning and experience. We can pretend we’ve got the answers, because that helps us feel in control, but the truth is, we don’t and we know we never truly will. So, we’ve just become accustomed to the darkness. We can make out some things, but the rest we keep straining to make sense of or reason with or just reason away…
But, this reality really should not affect our ability—or, desire—to live our life in God’s Light.
Because, He’s actually The One Who does know the beginning from the end… The Creator of this life, Who created your life and mine… The One who’s Holy and Just and just wants us to know Him more than anything… The One who knows it all and can change it all without even speaking a word, and yet has never changed Himself and has always existed and wants so much to be united with us in relationship, that He’d offer the way to Himself by sacrificing His Own Son…
The One Who wants us in the light with Him and waits upon us to simply accept this.
Yet. We. Just. Keep. Running.
And, yet… He just keeps on waiting. And, then keeps on loving us as we reject Him and giving grace as we dishonor Him and extending mercy as we lash out at Him and offering forgiveness as we betray Him and continues to wait and pursue and reach down, as we continue to run and ignore and feel unloved and bitter and unsatisfied because He hasn’t provided what we think He should, in a way we can totally understand and approve.
And, we’ll often gripe all day long about how hard and unfair this life is. Or complain or grumble or whine (or wine) or wish it would all end quickly so we can just, “Get home to heaven already!” And we’ll often choose to live like this continually every day.
While God—graciously and mercifully—continues to wait on us to choose Him every day…
And, you know, all this is really a crying shame, as my Nanny would say. (Well, her words might’ve been a little more colorful, honestly.) And, maybe it’s high time we stop? He’s done too much and requires too little in return for us to ever stare long-term into this short-term, self-centered vision of life.
Because the real truth here is, God is offering us a life lived completely in the full light of His Love and really only asks us for one thing in return… our time. Time in His Presence, Word, and prayer. Not so He can punish us or be the boss of us, even though He could obviously do so and deserves nothing less than our obedience. But, our outward actions aren’t ultimately at the heart of what He’s after.
See, God asks for our time so He can bring us into His Light. He wants our time so He can illumine our minds and light us up with the fullness of His LOVE. He wants our time because the heart of what He’s really after is the whole of our own heart…
To enlighten. To offer insight. To delight. To enliven. And to enable us to finally see this life we live through the same light He sees us in.
I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. (Ezekiel 36:26)
You see, God wants us seeing life with His Light, so that we can live our lives with the heart of His Son, Jesus Christ.
For now and forevermore.
Because, it’s by His light we see light.
And, we see life. We see truth. We see what He is making. The Kingdom He is creating. We see our role in His Kingdom and His purposes in all of His Creation.
Listen Friends, we no longer need to look to others or inside ourselves or into some crystal ball. (Hey, please don’t do that, by the way. At best fortune tellers, astrology, tarot cards, and the like, are a waste of time. At worse, dangerous and most definitely not of God – Who alone is Holy. Plus, He actually created those humans selling you their supposed wisdom, so there’s also that.)
And, we certainly don’t need to check out social media for the answers to this life, filling our minds with clichés or kitschy sayings in those cool little inspirational images that get passed around ad nauseam. You know, the ones with all the truth bombs that make us say, “YES!!!” because we think of sweet, little “Ol’ So and So” who soooooo needs to know this, but can’t be told to her face, so we re-share with the hope she sees it in our feed, even though she’ll never tell us if she does. (Honestly, awful. And, true.)
And, while I’m not trying to say there’s no truth at all to be found in these things or that there’s anything wrong with the sharing of them… I do wonder how many we really need to collect and offer others? And, more importantly, how this even become a thing in the first place? You know, inquiring minds and all that. Like, can these quotes made up by people for other people really ever help any of us out in the long term?
And, so what I guess I’m [not so eloquently] saying is that I’d much rather know what My Creator wants to say to me personally, than to know what someone He created says we all should know. And, that I’d much rather live in HIS Light of truth, than with the stress of not living up to someone else’s standards of truth. And, that I’d much rather hang on His Words than be hung up on someone else’s social media wall of wisdom. And that, on any given day of any given year, I’d rather trip up and fall at the scarred feet of my Savior Jesus, than get tripped up by some half-truth or ever fall out over some words of wisdom written by someone I’ve never met.
Because, by His Light—and in His Perfect Time that we choose to offer back to Him—we will see all we’ll ever need to see in order to live the lives He’s prepared in advance for each of us individually.
Now, may we each seek to live loved in THE True Light of Life and never, ever walk in darkness again.
Some verses for the curious…