Tuesday, January 2, 2024

Let it Shine

Let it Shine 
by David Brenneman 

"Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven." Matthew‬ ‭5:16‬.

When we go out into the world, it's not to get people to notice our greatness, our glory, rather it's for the world to see Jesus in us.  We come to Christ for salvation, He takes up residence in us. His Spirit begins His sanctifying work in us. It's these things that both draw and irritate the world.  It's not you personally.

Matthew 5, Jesus was completing the lesson on what's called the Beatitudes.  

‬‬“You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt has become tasteless, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled under foot by men.  “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden;  nor does anyone light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven. “Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish but to fulfill. For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished.  Whoever then annuls one of the least of these commandments, and teaches others to do the same, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever keeps and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. “For I say to you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven." ‭‭Matthew‬ ‭5:13‭-‬20‬.

There are thousands and thousands of people if not in the millions, who only think they are shining in this world for God.  They are counting on what they see as their own righteousness.  That last warning from Jesus applies to them.  

In your daily life, you are to be just as much about the Father’s business as Jesus was when He walked this Earth.  Jesus passed that on to His Disciples, then charged them to do the same.  Go, make disciples, teaching them all that He commanded. In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.  To live life in such a way that people see our good works and glorify our Father in Heaven. 

That's life.  It isn't what titles we get, it isn't what games are won, it isn't anything this world has to offer.  It's not anything that man can contrive.  Nothing we can do in and of ourselves.  The Light of Jesus Christ changes people, not our good looks, charm, peaceable nature.  Nothing of us personally is offensive to those still in the dark because they are in that darkness as our sin nature is.  

Your day begins and ends with Jesus guiding you, if indeed you are saved.  

One of Charley Pride's last songs before he died, had a line in it "I'm always standing in my way".  We do this a lot more than we know.  We are often grabbing onto things best left alone.  We don't want to accept what the Spirit says is of the darkness and should be shunned.  We redefine everything to make it an acceptable part of our lives.  We do this because our sin nature wants control. 

Start your day in prayer.  Admit that you are not going to see what you NEED to see today.  That you aren't going to BELIEVE what you need to understand about life on your own today.  

Trust in the Lord with all your heart And do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:5-6 isn't some suggestion for feeling better. 

What Jesus said in Matthew wasn't some good suggestions.  Jesus didn't make suggestions that were disposable concerning life.  Jesus taught how to live life in an acceptable way for His Father in Heaven.  

We stress about so much whether acknowledged or not, we do.  We are not to be in control of our lives, the Spirit is. 

We keep pace with Jesus, not the other way around.  His aim for us is the finish line of our lives. When we reach that end, that our lives were what He wanted them to be. 

When we hold onto the past, hold onto things that do not do anything to grow us in Christ, we slow down growing in Christ. 

Take a few minutes to look at what you find the most enjoyment in.  Would it be what Jesus does?  Would Jesus say that person, place or thing brings Him glory?  The standard is holiness.  The glory of Jesus is the Light that the world has a problem with.  

The lives of everyone we read in what is called the Faith Chapter in Hebrews would have been radically different had they lived for themselves more than they submitted to the Lord.  

We all learn differently, God taught me that decades ago when I first was beginning to teach new employees.  We learn differently but whatever is to be learned in Christ is going to work on everyone who submits to the Lord. Pray for His help in finding those teachers who teach in the way you learn. 

The plan of salvation was made simple enough for a child to understand it.  The life to be living in Christ is likewise made simple enough for those who are in Christ to understand it.  As we grow in Christ the brighter the light of Jesus Christ gets.  

"Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all things for the glory of God." 1 Corinthians 10:31. 

Pray before setting foot to go out into the world.  Ask for His help in keeping pace with Him.  He is the Teacher, we are the Learner.  We may not understand nor personally like the lessons but they are for us to learn and do. 

Let your light shine before men in such a way that people see your good works and glorify our Father in Heaven. 

All NASB 1995 and NASB Scripture Excerpts used by permission. (C) Lockman Foundation.

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