ROSCOMMON, MI – One of my favorite celebrations is July 4th. I love the color, the pageantry and celebrating the fact that our country was established on Christian principles. No matter how old I become, I still get excited to watch and hear the fireworks. My favorite place to watch fireworks is in Flagler Beach, Florida, close to the pier where the fireworks are launched.
As a kid there was nothing better than laying on the beach looking straight into the sky and feeling as if the kaleidoscope of colors were going to fall right on top of me while waiting to hear the boom of the next round of fireworks being launched. The colors would be so vivid and expansive it seemed as if you could reach out and grab them. The boom would be so loud and explosive it would make your teeth rattle and shake you to the core of your being. The only bad part of the evening was it seemingly ended too soon; however it would go out with a bang – a continuous 3-4 minutes of explosions of color and sound would fill the beach sky – it was always an amazing finale!
Reflecting back on those childhood experiences I am reminded of how God has called us to be light. In Matthew 5:16 we are instructed to let our light (God in and through us) shine before others so they may see our good deeds and bring glory to our Father in heaven. Imagine for a moment living a life so infused with Christ, so empowered by His love, so visibly loud for His glory, our lost neighbors would be in awe of our lives and know that only God could be responsible. Amazingly, we do not need to just imagine it.
When we die to our old nature and let God’s nature supernaturally change us from the inside out we become reflectors of His glory. We begin to shine in dark places and light up the night sky like the 4th of July. We are to let the light of God manifest and shine so brightly in all we do that the world will not only take notice, but will give glory to God our Father for it! Oh, and do not forget, this light does not disappoint! This light has no end. It has no finale. It shines on and on for all eternity.
Eradicating darkness wherever it shines! Healing broken lives, resurrecting lost dreams, restoring hope to the hopeless, replacing heaviness with joy, restoring relationships – this is the power of God’s light. So, don’t hide His light, do not be afraid where it may lead you. As long as His light is illuminating the path you can be sure of your next step. You never know, you may just be the fireworks that grabs the attention of a co-worker. You may just be the boom that causes your lost family member to wake up and look up. Go! Let your life light up the dark night. Light it Up!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Mike Schatz serves on the staff of the Baptist State Convention of Michigan. He is the State Director of Spiritual Enrichment and Retreats and lives at Bambi Lake.