Thursday, March 17, 2022

A Light on a Hill

A Light on a Hill

"You were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light. EPHESIANS 5:8 

Today, March 17, is the day tradition says was the death date (AD 461 or 493) of Patrick, patron saint of Ireland. Born in Britain, Patrick was captured by Irish raiders as a teenager and forced into slavery in Ireland until he escaped six years later. After returning to his family in Britain, he supposedly had a vision of a man who gave him a letter, calling him to return to Ireland with the gospel. And return he did. Though there is scant historical documentation about Patrick’s ministry in Ireland, the abundance of traditions (not to mention his sainthood) speaks of the brightness and consistency of the spiritual light he took into a dark land. Today is a good day to remember that, like Patrick, every Christian is called by God to go into the world and be “the light of the world” (Matthew 5:14)—a light that should not be hidden but should shine brightly. What is the light? It is the good works of love and service we perform in the name of Christ that cause men to glorify God in heaven (Matthew 5:16). Light has one purpose: to illuminate the darkness. If we never penetrate the dark corners of this world with our presence, how will they be illumined? 

The gospel is light, but only the Spirit can give sight. A. W. TOZER  - Dr. David Jeremiah Turning Points with God 

"You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden; nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Your light must shine before people in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven." Matthew 5:14-16 NASB 

"Then Jesus again spoke to them, saying, “I am the Light of the world; the one who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life.” John 8:12 NASB 

"Go, therefore, and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to follow all that I commanded you; and behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:19-20 NASB 

Peppered. The urban dictionary says this is an action word to describe getting hit multiple times.  

People often want to know what God's Will is for them.  The more you read your Bible, the more you pray, the more you learn about what God's Will is for you. 

Reading in Deuteronomy, towards the end of it, there's something to take note of. Just before his death, Moses is told what is going to happen to this people that he lead around for 80 years.  He turns around and tells the people exactly what they will do. How they will behave and just how they will indeed turn against what they've just been instructed.  They were silent. They didn't speak up and deny that prophecy spoken concerning them. 

A city on a hill. That just stuck out to me. Light impacts life and as a popular saying says, you cannot "unsee" what it reveals.  We often claim to want to know God's Will but are unwilling to "go there". We are unwilling to look where the Light is revealing what it is God’s wanting us to do or not do.  Part of not being able to have an excuse before Jesus is the truth that we WILL know what He meant when the Spirit revealed what it was we were meant to be doing. God's not going to show us what to do then leave confusion for us to figure out things. Scripture says that God is not a God of confusion. 1 Corinthians 14:33.

If your life in Christ is plagued with unhappiness, then it's time to stop your fighting the knowledge that has been revealed to you by the Spirit of God.  Self deception is a poison. We know the path and convince ourselves we cannot do it or go there.  The visible consequences are to great in our minds eye.  We would lose too much, sacrifice what we think we cannot live without. 

The Light will never stop revealing our hearts to us. 

Your mind and soul are tainted by your sin nature.  You will only figure out what is sin from what is not by the Light of Christ through the Spirit of God.  

You and I will always find ways to creatively push back on God concerning what path He is directing us to take.  Read in Exodus, Leviticus, Deuteronomy.  Look at the creative excuses the people came up with about a broad range of things. 

It's too far to drive. 
It's too much effort. 
It's too risky. 
I just can't because...fill in the blank. 

Was listening to Pastor Jeff Brown of the Middlebranch Grace Brethren Church last night.  People asking him to pray for them because they felt like they were in a desert spiritually. 

Spiritual droughts are on us when there's no shortage of Living water. 
We decide if we are going to let the Light of Christ shine or try to hide it.
We choose to drink, through unbridled, unhindered, obedience or choose to wallow in the misery of our own choosing. 

We can know the Will of God if we quit fighting what He has already revealed to us to go and do.  

So what that it costs you time to drive to where you know you will be fed the Word of God. Is that kind of excuse going to hold water next to the suffering Jesus did on the cross to save you?

So what if it means changing jobs, if it means moving.  What does that excuse mean in light of obedience to live for the One who saved you?

Romans 12 speaks to a transformed life. Transformed means it is not what it once was. It has new priorities, new principles, new motivations.  New, new, new.

Romans 12 speaks to having been given gifts.  What good is being given a loaded toolbox but you never use whatever is in it?

Romans 12 speaks to obedience in what we are called to do. We aren't to cower behind excuses that are inconsequential next to what is about to come upon the Earth. 

If you aren't happy in your job, your marriage, your relationships, your anything.  Look in the mirror. Are you all in with your walk with Jesus?  If you are not, why not?  You will stay where you are until you obey.  God's not going to give you more to do until obedience happens. 

You cannot hide the Light of Christ in you and expect Him to bless what you do. 

The widow in the story of Elisha was convinced that they were going to lose it all including their life. She was told to do something that made no earthly sense. Keep filling containers with oil. God provided enough to fill everything they could find.  She trusted in the Word of God from the man of God. God blessed her obedience. 

Let your Light shine. Let your obedience happen. See what God will indeed do. 
You may need to give up something, may not need to. But if you don't willingly obey then you may still lose it anyway.  God cannot bless disobedient children.  Read the end of Deuteronomy.  Be willing to put yourself out there in your walk with Jesus. See what happens. 

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