Got a light? It might be a question from someone trying to smoke a cigar or cigarette. Or possibly from someone peering into a dark basement or crawl space. Either way, when you need a light, you need a light.
We all have needs. Many of them are different, but not all of them. I get messages every day from people with immense needs. Some are personal, like a marriage in trouble, an illness or a personal crisis. Others affect a larger group. An orphanage that needs food or a community that has been flooded. I can’t meet these needs; but I know who can. So I pray for each one, and I encourage them to look to the Lord. He’s the one who is able to provide for all our needs as we seek Him.
But there is one need that we all share. We need a light.
You’ll probably recognise today’s verse. It’s John 3:16, the verse that tells us GOD SO LOVED THE WORLD THAT HE GAVE HIS ONE AND ONLY SON, THAT WHO EVER BELIEVES IN HIM WOULD NOT PERISH, BUT HAVE EVERLASTING LIFE.
Yup, you and I start this life in darkness and need a light; His light. The message the scriptures proclaim to you and me is that God is light, and in Him is no darkness at all. Jesus is the only one who can enter our darkness and give us His light. He said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”
Some people think salvation is like Noah putting large pegs on the outside of the ark and telling people that, if they can just hold on through the storm, they’ll be saved. But it is not! Salvation is like the offer God made to Noah. God’s offer was to enter the ark and be kept safe by Him. God holds onto those who come to Him, not the other way around.
And He holds on to us even when our grip slips! I’m so glad that John 3:16 does NOT read “God so loved the world that He gave His one and only son that whoever believes in Him WOULD GET TEN MORE CHANCES TO GET IT RIGHT.” We don’t need “ten more chances” to be holy. (I’d have blown through those by lunchtime!!!”) We need a God who made a way for us to be set free, and to walk in His grace. We need a God who gives us His light to overcome our darkness – time after time after time. You and I, we need God who is big enough to guide us as we grow. A God who loves us as we are, but loves us too much to leave us as we are. We need a God that gives us promises with purpose, whose grace is sufficient – always.
That reminds me of the family with a new baby. The wife asked her husband to change a messy diaper. “I’m busy,” he said. “I’ll do the next one.” So the next time the baby needed to be changed, the wife reminded the husband that it was his turn. He gave her a puzzled look, then said, “I didn’t mean the next diaper; I meant the next baby!” God’s grace is like a parent changing a messy diaper. He hates the mess, but understands that growth and maturity will eliminate it eventually. In the meantime, the parent’s job is to continue to love, continue to teach, and continue to change the baby.
We ought to make the right choice, we should never choose to sin. We don’t always do that, of course. Thankfully there is grace in temptation, forgiveness after failure, restoration after repentance. I need God’s grace and forgiveness. We all do.
As we walk in His grace, filled with His Spirit, He uses us as He changes us. We don’t have to wait until we’re “perfect” to choose to be used. We can choose to listen today. We can choose to yield to His call and serve Him for His glory, We can choose to receive His light, and then let it shine brighter and brighter in us.
As He uses us, touching lives and changing hearts, He is magnified and glorified. His light shines through us.
David was a man who understood sin, failure, redemption and forgiveness.
He knew what it meant to be restored by God, and then used again — in spite of his failures.
David the murderer. David the adulterer. David the prideful and arrogant.
He was also David the forgiven. David the restored.
Because David knew that the path of sin and temptation is not a one way street, David chose to repent and return.
God called David a man after His own heart.
Never let your past stop you from repenting and returning to serve God in your present. It will transform your future.
Need a light? I’ve got one!