Let your light so shine... Matthew 5:16
Someone once said, “only when it’s dark enough outside, can you see the stars.” In these bleak times, there is ample room for the Saints to shine. As a nation, we have enjoyed material blessings approaching opulence. Until the recent economic setback, many people felt no need for God because of their IRAs and Keoghs. However, when times get tough, all roads lead back to the cross. Remember how prayer meetings were breaking out all over the place after 9-11? With that in mind, what can we do to ‘show forth the excellence of God’ in a world in turmoil?
We still have the good news or the Gospel (1 Corinthians 15:3, 4). The world is still looking for some good news. They are not getting it from the networks but they should see it and be able to hear it from us. In tough times, many return to tried and true methods of living. Our best days are ahead. Be ready to share the good news.
Secondly, we can give or show forth our Integrity (Matthew 5:37; James 5:12). Be honest in your dealings with people. If you are in business, don’t promise what you cannot deliver or allow others to try to squeeze you into the world’s mold. It’s better to give honest bad news than to sugar coat a lie. Sadly, one of the reasons we are in this economic mess is due to dishonesty by some in business.
Thirdly, we can be people of Virtue (Philippians 4:8; Titus 2:3; 2 Peter 1:3;
2 Peter 1:5) in every situation. This word is akin to integrity and reinforces the moral soundness of the indwelling presence of God’s Spirit. In a ‘dog eat dog’ culture, we need to lead the way in goodness and kindness. Many have been won to Christ just because someone was nice to them.
Lastly, we need to be people of Encouragement (2 Timothy 4:2; Hebrews 3:13). One word can make a difference when spoken in faith and hope. These tough economic times will not last. However, no one has ever overcome anything of substance minus encouragement of one kind of another. As Christians, we are empowered to encourage others even in the midst of tough times.
I wrote these words after recently visiting a man in a local hospital. He’d been diagnosed with cancer (brain, liver and lung). As we started talking, I felt sorry for him. However, this Spirit-filled powerhouse began to minister to me and I was the richer for having met him. How much more do we have to give to those in our sphere of influence? Even in our pain, God wants to speak through us because we have much to G-I-V-E.
Saints, we can shine during these dark times because the True Light shines through us…Selah