Jesus said, “If I make you light-bearers, you don’t think I’m going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I’m putting you on a light stand. Now that I’ve put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you’ll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in Heaven.”
~Matthew 5:15-16 (Msg).
Letting our light shine is tricky business. Too much or too little and we miss the marks designed for us in the heavenly realm. After all, it’s not about us. But we often find ‘ourselves’ getting in God’s way—a truth for all to contend with regardless of our ‘piousness’.
Are We Hidden With Christ in God? (Colossians 3:3)
There is a golden paradox flourishing through this magnificent of godly truths. It is this: through our active hiding of good deeds these are brought forth to a world very much expecting us to claim the kudos due.
And it’s simple; we don’t. We avoid it; and this plainly via motive.
The more we reject the credit in Jesus’ name—but without brandishing “Jesus” painfully all over the non-believing world—the more it is to God’s glory, and inevitably to our blessing also (but we’re warned, this ‘blessing’ is elusive, and cringe we do in clamouring for it).
Where we want to be is in the ‘not-so-interested’ category regarding what we want and don’t want. God is blessing us myriads more abundantly than we could ever bless ourselves right here.
No ‘Try Hards’
Perhaps the most important consideration is we must never appear to be trying hard. God’s will is not placated and we cannot augment it; we flow with it. It is burgeoning surrender, the cusp of which is always ‘ear to the door,’ seeking for insight on the next move, but never actually making it until the Holy Spirit’s Presence within—and our own morality enjoining—say “Go!”
We’ve heard it from a number of sources, and we contend in this truth: the faith-life is not about trying... it’s about training, i.e. learning and application, re-learning and re-application and so forth.
What’s the Motive?
“What’s in it for us?” It’s the battle cry of Joe Citizen, but it’s not to be for us.
At final stretch, this is all about motive. Ours for ourselves is truly thrown away for a better motive; the strong arm of the Lord our God. This means we’ll be tested and put through the fiery furnace to refine our motive-laden hearts more than once-to-repetitively, until we get it right, consistently.
As light-bearers one and all, let’s take up our true lanterns—always conformed to the Lord’s charge no matter what!
© 2010 S. J. Wickham.