Monday, August 4, 2008

Glow in the Dark

Your eye is the lamp of your body. When your eyes are good, your body also is full of light. But when they are bad, your body also is full of darkness.

Luke 11.34

The Eyes Have It

After deciding to follow Christ, we become His light. In Matthew 5.14, He told us, “You are the light of the world.” The transformative power of faith ignites new passions and desires in us. They illuminate our lives and bring clarity to our circumstances. In turn, how brightly we shine depends entirely on how clearly we see. According to Jesus, our capacity to see what’s good enables our incandescence. If we maintain a negative, gloomy outlook, we bring very little light to our situations. But if we view the world through optimistic, hopeful eyes, we shine. The light we emit dispels the darkness around us.

Star Power

We call the best, most charismatic among us stars because they glow in the dark. They view the world and what they have to give it in unique ways. The recent Jolie-Pitt twins’ “photo op” provides a superb example. Fully aware the tabloids would pay a fortune for snapshots of their infants, these superstars ingeniously took control of the situation. Instead of hiding from the paparazzi, they boldly shined new light on the deal. They redirected millions that would have otherwise lined a photographer’s pockets to help needy people.

They knew this would stir controversy. But they looked beyond their short-term comfort to envision long-term benefits. Rather than mount an ineffective defense to protect their privacy, they proactively defused an unfavorable outcome. They showed the respect and concern for others that they desired for themselves. They refused to be victims, recognizing they had the power to change the game. No doubt many stars will follow their lead, and millions around the world will be blessed as a result. It was a brilliant strategy.

Shine! Shine! Shine!

We have the same potential to seize control of looming darkness by radiating God’s light. This happens when we focus on possibilities for goodness. If we only concentrate on what’s wrong, our sight grows dim as our inner light fails. But if we view our dismal surroundings through eyes of faith, our light grows stronger and our prospects turn brighter.

When we shine hope into the dark hopeless corners of our lives, the impossible becomes inevitable. As Romans 5.5 says: “Hope does not disappoint, because God has poured out his love into our hearts.” As true believers, we govern our lives by unnatural principles. “What you see is what you get” doesn’t apply. In our world, what we see is what we give.

What we see determines how much light we possess to overcome darkness we face.

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