“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” (Matthew 5:14-16 NIV)
You cannot make yourself the light of the world. Jesus says you are the light of the world because of your relationship with him. “The God who said, ‘Out of darkness the light shall shine!’ is the same God who made his light shine in our hearts, to bring us the knowledge of God's glory shining in the face of Christ” (2 Corinthians 4:6 TEV).
God speaks the light of Jesus into our hearts, and his light shines so powerfully through us that we are like stars in the universe that point the whole human race toward real life (Philippians 2:15-16).
This is a portrait of discipleship. Jesus, who is the light of the world, re-creates us into the light of the world. We are light, not because of anything in ourselves, but because we are in a supernatural union with the light of the world. He calls us to follow after him, and he says, “Whoever follows me will have the light of life and will never walk in darkness” (John 8:12b TEV).
Our focus must always be on the light, humbly trusting Jesus to reveal the light through us. Prayerfully remember:
Your influence and visibility is a result of who lives in you, not because of what you do. It is God who puts you in a place of influence and visibility.
You are merely a steward of your influence and visibility, so it is important you get out of the way and let Jesus work through you.
Only God can measure the significance of your influence and visibility. You may influence one person who will then influence the world. Your focus is on following Jesus wherever he leads.
Talk About It
How are you using your influence to shine the light of Christ?
Ask God to humble you as you consider how he has placed you in influence for his glory alone. Pray for his wisdom and discernment as you follow Jesus’ example and direction for your life.
Jon Walker’s new book, Breakfast with Bonhoeffer, is a story of God’s faithfulness during struggles with bipolar disorder, divorce, and economic uncertainty.
This devotional © Copyright 2012 Jon Walker. All rights reserved. Used by permission.