September 7, 2014

Eyes wide open . . .

In the dark of the night, I needed something in the kitchen, so got up and went there without turning on any lights. Actually, there was enough light kept me from stumbling. Street lights shone in from outside and our kitchen has lights on everything — the microwave, clocks, stove, thermostat and so on, so they outlined everything clearly enough that I could see where I was going.

Jesus gives light to my life, illuminating my heart so I can see what I need to walk with Him in spirit and in truth without stumbling. His light is seldom dim, more often like a searchlight that reveals sin, or a beacon that shows me where to go. This morning, He offers these words . . .

“No one after lighting a lamp puts it in a cellar or under a basket, but on a stand, so that those who enter may see the light. Your eye is the lamp of your body. When your eye is healthy, your whole body is full of light, but when it is bad, your body is full of darkness. Therefore be careful lest the light in you be darkness. If then your whole body is full of light, having no part dark, it will be wholly bright, as when a lamp with its rays gives you light.” (Luke 11:33–36)

The odd words about an eye being healthy are easily explained. The eye is the place where light enters. If that place is faulty, then whatever the Lord is trying to say to me will not gain entrance, or it will be dim and fuzzy. That is, my ability to see things clearly will affect the whole way I act and live.

Jesus says if the eye of the soul is closed or diseased, then I cannot see the light of Christ. Instead, my life will be full of darkness and unable to realize what is wrong with me or my world. I will stumble about, without clear direction and without any strong spiritual moorings.

However, as the Holy Spirit does His work, He ‘clears my vision’ and the light comes in. With that light, He begins the transformation process. This happened in His initial work of salvation, and keeps on happening as God brings my way of life into line with the way I now see things. Having lit the lamp, He lifts it up to shed its rays into every corner of my life. No part is to remain in darkness.

Here is the spiritual danger: If God gives me light and I shut my eyes to it, then I am disobeying His revelation to me. That is sinful rebellion, no matter how you spell it.

If God gives me light and I receive it, but ‘put it under a basket’ then that light is restricted. I might enjoy what I have learned, even write it in this blog, but if I hide it, and refuse to let it be seen in my life, then I face two dangers: one is the peril of not letting it affect all of how I think, talk and live, and the other is that a hidden lamp will snuff out for lack of oxygen. I could lose sight of that which God so graciously revealed, and again be plunged into darkness, or at least partial darkness.

We all know people who seem to be oblivious to the most obvious things of life. God does not want me to be like that. He gives light that I might see it, be filled with it, and go through life illuminated by the truth He gives, not stumbling or bumping into things. He wants me to be a beacon so others can see His light also.

Lord, this is simple stuff, but from it I realize that I must live today and each day according to the light You have given me, applying it to my relationships, responses, words, actions, even to my very thoughts. Keep my eyes on You and keep me focused on Your light. 

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