I used to wake our children up by singing – “Rise and shine and give God the glory! Children of the Lord!”
They loved it when they were little . . . not so much when they were teens.
This morning I awakened with the words of Isaiah 60:1 running through my mind…
Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord shines over you.Isaiah 60:1 (CSB)
I was still a little sleepy . . . I don’t know that I was really ready to arise, and I definitely wasn’t ready to shine! But isn’t our God awesome?
It didn’t matter how I felt, I was invited by His grace to arise and shine. And so are you!
The truth is, you and I are only able to rise up and shine at all because of and by the grace and mercy of our Lord and Savior. There is no breath that does not come as a gift from our Creator, there is no lasting hope without Jesus, and there is definitely no shining without the power of the Holy Spirit.
What does shining look like?
“I am the light of the world. The person who follows me will never live in darkness but will have the light that gives life.”Joh 8:12
Let your light shine in front of men. Then they will see the good things you do and will honor your Father who is in heaven.Matthew 5:16 (NLV)
Following Jesus makes it possible for us to live in His Light, “the light that gives life.” He makes it possible for us to experience God’s presence, protection, and guidance. He gives us what we need to live for God’s glory . . . what we need to shine.
John wrote the following about Jesus:
In the beginning there was the Word. The Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. All things were made by Him, and nothing was made without Him. In Him there was life, and that life was the light of all people. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overpowered it.John 1:1–5
The LAB Notes add:
The darkness of evil never has and never will overcome God’s light. [Jesus] lights the path ahead of us so we can see how to live. He removes the darkness of sin from our lives.
He shines the light of God’s love into our lives and He makes it possible for us to rise and shine reflecting His light at the times and in the places He has prepared for us.
The darkness of the world around us need never overwhelm us when our lives are filled with the light of God’s love . . . the Light of Jesus!
A Prayer to Rise and Shine the Light of God’s Love
Father, Thank you for sending Jesus, the Light, into the world. Thank you for making it possible for my sins to be forgiven. Thank you for making it possible for me to experience “new life” through Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection. And thank you for His example that shows me what it means to shine the light of Your love.
Since the first sin in the Garden, darkness has been evident in our world. Sin disheartens us, temptation distracts us, and the evidence of evil surrounds us. But the Light is brighter . . . the Light is greater. The darkness has not nor will it ever overcome Jesus, the Light. He is with us and within us. His light makes it possible for those who “follow” Him to Rise and Shine!
So, I ask You, Father, to fill me with the Spirit. As I turn to Your Word and come to You in prayer, please fill me with the Light of my Savior! Guide me each day. Give me all that I need to shine brightly in a dark world. Help me to boldly share the TRUTH of Your Love through my words and through my actions. Bless me with the ability to look at others through Jesus’ eyes, to look at everyone with compassion and love. And give me the courage and strength I need to boldly act on that love for the glory of Your name. Amen.
What a blessed relief it is to know that you and I don’t have to rise and shine on our own. We have the Spirit with us and within us to help us and give us everything we need.
So, for this day and for all of our days to come . . . let us thank, praise, and glorify God for the life He gives us. Let’s Rise and Shine and Give God the Glory!
May God give you everything you need to reflect His love . . . with His praises on your lips and His love in your heart. May He give you all that you need to live for His glory.
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