Jesus told His followers that they are the “Light of the World.”
That includes you and me. And I love it but in all honesty, it stresses me out a little, too.
Why does light shining make me anxious?
Because sometimes I just don’t want to shine.
Sometimes I feel dull and broken.
And last Friday night, I once again realized the struggle is the same for everyone. The four of us talked about illness, depression, loss, fear, rejection, pain, stress, anxiety, etc. When the presentations ended one after another, women came up to us saying, “thank you so much,” I’m struggling with _______.”
The truth . . . sometimes life is distracting with circumstances that make it hard to shine.
With God’s help, shining is possible even when change overwhelms and problems are plentiful.
I noticed something recently while studying Matthew 5:14…
Jesus doesn’t tell His followers to be light, He says they “ARE light.”
God’s Spirit in His children is LIGHT!
Did you know the word enthusiasm is made up of two little Greek words, en and theos? En is the Greek word for within or in, and theos is the Greek word for God.
So “enthusiasm” literally means, “full of or in God.”
Don’t you just love that!
God puts enthusiasm in you! Just as He is enthusiastic about you!
Enthusiasm isn’t dependent on what’s happening now but on the eternal blessings you have in God!
I’d like to tell you a story:
I greeted her as she walked into the store and she responded with an understated smile. Tall and beautiful with dark eyes and short curly brown hair, she wandered back to the sale section and began sorting through her size.
As I approached her I noticed she seemed to be lost in her own far away thoughts . . . that spilled into words as I asked if I could help her find anything special…
She said, “I’ve been focused on my career for more than 15 years. I love what I do, and thought it was my life–until I met ‘John’ and fell in love. I’m so blessed to be with such a wonderful man. We were married a little over a month ago, and this morning . . . I found out I’m . . . going to have a baby.”
I congratulated her and she added, “It’s all good and kind of exciting, but I’m overwhelmed. Everything is happening so fast. So many changes. I want children, I think, but I didn’t expect this so soon”
A couple of things made me think she followed Jesus.
1. She used the word blessed.
2. And even with the “deer in the headlights” look on her face . . . her eyes sparkled.
We started to talk faith.
About God’s plans and the way He can surprise us by taking our plans and turning them upside down. How He lifts us out of our comfortable to draw us close and show us how much we need Him.
We talked for about 20 minutes while looking for a few cute tops she could wear when her figure began to change.
And then she was gone.
I will never forget that brief meeting although it happened almost a decade ago.
- Not because it was the beginning of a lasting friendship – I never saw her again.
- Not because it was profound or all that unique.
- Not because the words spoken had a major impact on my life.
But because . . . though she felt overwhelmed, her eyes sparkled with God’s light!
Overwhelm of any kind, good, bad, or everyday normal, can dull our sparkle if we let it.
If sparkling were up to me, I have to admit far too often it would not happen.
God says His grace is sufficient no matter how overwhelmed we feel or how His perfect plans differ from our own. It can light our way and make shining possible.
Don’t you know that you are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives in you? 1 Corinthians 3:16
But the Spirit produces the fruit of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Galatians 5:22–23
I ask the Father in His great glory to give you the power to be strong inwardly through His Spirit. I pray that Christ will live in your hearts by faith and that your life will be strong in love and be built on love. Ephesians 3:16–17
Friend, God enthusiastically takes your mess . . . those things working to dull your sparkle and replaces it with the light of His truth.
Jesus – the Way, Truth, and Life. The Light of the World. The Lover of your soul is enthusiastic about you!
And He gives you everything you need to sparkle with enthusiasm in Him and for Him.
“Wherever you are, be all there. Live to the hilt every situation you believe to be the will of God.” ~ Jim Elliot
It’s possible even when you are overwhelmed, anxious, or your heart is breaking because God’s spirit will meet your needs . . . every one of them.
My God will use His wonderful riches in Christ Jesus to give you everything you need. Philippians 4:19
And God will generously provide all you need. Then you will always have everything you need and plenty left over to share with others. 2 Corinthians 9:8
What’s distracting you today?
What’s dulling your sparkle?
Give it to God. Go to His Word. Trust His promises. And pray with persistence.
God will give you all you need to sparkle for His glory!
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