As the sun shines bright in the physical world, so shall you, child of God, let the Son shine bright inside your heart. It isn’t easy, and no one said that it would be.
In my personal experiences, I found it easy to shine bright for the world when your world is going okay. Of course, there are the regular hiccups like it is raining outside or you are having a bad hair day, or you only have fifty dollars left in your checking account with payday three days away, but you have food to eat, clean clothes to wear, and gas in your car, so you know you will be okay. You can even joke about robbing Peter to pay Paul.
But what happens when life isn’t going well. When your child whom you love so much turns to drugs, and you have to make hard choices. When you aren’t feeling very well, and the report comes back positive with a life-threatening disease. When pressures at work are getting to you, and you feel like you will lose your job, and rent is due.
How do you respond to life? Is it a testament, at the time, of your character, whether you choose a negative or positive outlook? Or maybe it is all about development.
Here is a situation to think about, and while you are reading, think about how you would react.
One woman decides to go on a motorcycle ride with a man who had been drinking. He makes the wrong decision, which leads to an accident. The woman’s leg is amputated mid-thigh, and one of her forearms has to have four skin grafts and still has deep indention of the injury. Two years after the accident, she has isolated her friends and coworkers with the negative outlook she carries. She doesn’t accept responsibility for choosing to get on the motorcycle with someone who had been drinking.
The second woman had been training for months, possibly even years for the marathon. She was at the place where the bomb had been planted and then exploded yards from her. At the hospital, the doctors couldn’t save her leg. One year later, with an excellent fitting prosthetic, she proudly runs the same marathon race facing her past demons head-on.
No one has a perfect life, whether we are making good choices or not; however, we are all given a life to live. Our choices determine the quality of it. Do you see others and see a glow on their face or joy in their eyes and think wow, they must have it together, look at how happy they are? Do you think you are singled out to have pain in each day of your life and sense you are alone in what you feel? When you are going through a tough time, do you look for the positive or the negative? Do you isolate others?
If you wonder how to let the Son shine brightly upon yourself and, consequently, on others, I want to lead you to the color red: after all, the sun burns a person’s skin red if abused and the Son gives us red words to avoid abuse. Sometimes even harm we do unto ourselves—that pesky, irritating, negative inner voice who just won’t leave us alone.
The red letters in the Bible are words spoken of Christ, recorded for each person to apply to their own life. They are there to teach us about the One who loves us and who we worship.
As we look at the children we raise and the joys and hurts they cause us, can’t we apply from Christ raising each one of us? However, His grace and love are infallible, and He will raise us to a new height in belief and faith when we change our perspective.
Let us choose a perspective that goes beyond the acceptable status of society in today’s world. Let us have a perspective of Christ in each thought and action. Therein lay the answer on how to receive the joy in our eyes and the glow on our face.
As you concentrate your thoughts upon our Lord and turn to Him to fulfill all your needs, physical, emotional, financial and spiritual, you will naturally acquire a glow upon your face as Moses did after being in the presence of Christ for days on end. It will be so subtle that people you know will begin to notice a difference while you have not.
And the fantastic part of this is that the circumstances that surround your life may not change – not for the better, not for the worse – but it is your perspective about life, love, and the pursuit of happiness that has changed. As for those who you may think someone else has it all together, think again:
I Peter 4:12 (MSG)
Friends, when life gets really difficult, don’t jump to the conclusion that God isn’t on the job. Instead, be glad that you are in the very thick of what Christ experienced. This is a spiritual refining process, with glory just around the corner.
John 16:31 (MSG)
Jesus answered them, “Do you finally believe? In fact, you’re about to make a run for it—saving your own skins and abandoning me. But I’m not abandoned. The Father is with me. I’ve told you all this so that trusting me, you will be unshakable and assured, deeply at peace. In this godless world you will continue to experience difficulties. But take heart! I’ve conquered the world.”
Colossians 1:27 (NLT)
For God wanted them to know the riches and glory of Christ are for you Gentiles, too. And this is the secret: Christ lives in you. This gives you assurance of sharing his glory.
Take a moment and write down any thoughts you may have or write out a prayer for your reflection on circumstances/life.
This is one of the stories published in my group or individual study called, Reflections. It is available in ebook, paperback, and audio.