• Ed Hlad

Bright Lights

When God saved us he created a new person. The Holy Spirit came to dwell in us and he brought with him a new character that was marked by a new heart. A heart of love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. He produces in us strength and courage as he did in Joshua. We have the character of the widow of Zarephath who gave of her last meal to Elijah. We have the character of Ruth who left her life in order to care for her mother in law. We have the character of Daniel who stood for what is right in a foreign land. We have the character of Jeremiah and Ezekiel who were willing to speak the truth. We have the character of Job who loved God through great loss. We have the character of Joseph who returned good for great evil. We have the character of the widow who believed her half-cent was worthy of giving to God, believing he would give more tomorrow. We have the character of Paul. We have the character of Jesus who did not cling to his reputation but came and lived among us in order to serve us by dying in our place.

It is during the darkest nights and roughest storms that this character is able to shine the brightest. When our bosses do a poor job during this dark storm. Our character can shine brightly. When our communities ask much of us, our character is able to shine brightly. When the stresses begin to build and others begin to crumble our new character allows us to be compassionate and strong. When our lack of finances brings a new lifestyle our new character shines just like the widows of old. When God double downs on the storm and trouble heaps upon trouble our character shines brilliantly through the darkness.

These bright lights create a beacon to the glory of God. We do not stand in our own strength. We stand in the righteous life that Jesus has given to us. We stand because of the work that he is doing in our lives. We do not give in to the flesh that cries out for us to hoard or to treat evil with evil. We stand with the many witnesses who have gone before us and we shine brightly. We work when no one works. We do not grumble and complain. We give when we have little to give. We help when true help is needed, even if it puts us at risk. We submit even when we struggle to agree. We return good for evil. We are compassionate to those who do not deserve compassion. We are different and we shine to the glory of our great and glorious God.

The life of a Christian is not an easy life. It is not for the faint. We walk knowing that God has placed us just where we are for such a time as this. It is not easy to die to our selves and to live for his glory. It is why we devour his Word. We pray often. We live together. Supporting one another. Encouraging one another. Longing for his soon return.

Be the light today.

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