Back in January we had a clear night to view the full lunar eclipse dubbed the “Super Blood Moon”. It was a marvelous, though very cold, experience. Where we live, there are very few lights at night, in fact, our county is designated a “dark sky community”, so when we have full moons, it can be almost the equivalent of a cloudy daytime light.
As the moon was full and bright, we were able to watch as the shadow of the earth spread across the moon. In less than an hour, we went from full brightness to seeing a red glow outlining the earth’s shadow. This event caused me to think about light and darkness and our role as Christians in the world.
How the moon shines
The moon itself does not produce any light. The light that we see is a reflection of the sun’s light off the moon. Thus we have the different phases of the moon through the months as the moon rotates around the earth which is rotating around the sun.
With the lunar eclipse, the earth got in the way of the light from the sun to the moon. What was a full moon, bright enough to light up the landscape, became an reddish-orange ball providing minimal light to the earth. The earth came between the sun and the moon, reducing the light being reflected.
The Light of the world
Jesus said “I am the light of the world” (John 8:12). Just as the sun provides light to see things in the physical, the Son of God is the light by which we are able to see things spiritually. We need to be sure that our life is centered on Jesus.
When we are in right relationship with God through Christ, we are able to reflect His light into the dark world. Through us, people are able to see a reflection of God’s light.
In Matthew 5:14-16, Jesus tells us that we “are the light of the world. . . . let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” All believers should be a light wherever they are The ultimate purpose in shining light in the darkness is for people to see the Father and give Him glory.
Allowing things to get in the way
The rest of that passage says “A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others”. (Matthew 5:14b-16a)
I’ve allowed many things over the years to come between me and Jesus’ light. Things like school, work, friends, career ambition, family, ministry, church, my own insecurities, my desires, and the list could go on. You’ll notice that most of what I listed aren’t bad things. In fact, many of them are good things and important for us to be healthy.
The earth is a good thing and quite necessary to our ability to live. But when it comes between the sun and the moon, it casts a shadow causing the moon to not shine brightly. So what makes a good thing become a problem? It’s when we allow it to come between us and the Lord.
What do you reflect?
As Christians, we should be reflecting the light of Christ to the world. We need to be in alignment with Christ, the source of light, so that we are a light in the darkness of this world. Where there is despair, we should shine hope. When the world is unconstrained, we are to walk in self-control. Where hate rules, we are to be a source of love.
In other words, we should be shining brightly with the fruit of the Holy Spirit. “The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.” (Galatians 5:22-23)
When people look at your life, what do they see? Are you a beacon of light in darkness? Are the things of this world, even the good things, getting between you and the Son? Do the fruit of the Spirit reflect in you?
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