Like many kids, my granddaughter often drew pictures for her beloved preschool teacher, Tina. After she moved to another classroom, she continued to draw beautiful pictures for Tina and expressed great delight when she responded.
“Grandma,” she said “Tina said I have a light bulb in my heart that lights up the whole room when I walk in!” Her immense joy over Tina’s words radiated from her face and touched even me.
The Light of a Child
These weren’t her teacher’s exact words, but this was Gavin’s wonderful interpretation. My 5 year-old granddaughter knows she is loved by teachers, family, and friends. Like Tigger in Winnie the Pooh, her bouncy attitude is effusive. Her teacher only affirms what Gavin already believes about herself.
What so struck me is that Gavin embraces love as God intended. She grasps how loved she is and she lives out of that assurance. She shines love to the world around her with true abandonment.
In contrast, as adults, we may carry a load of emotional baggage and a well-developed cynicism about love. Fair enough. I know that negative life circumstances can dim our child-like enthusiasm and faith. So how do we recapture that special light that brightens the world?
How Do We Let Our Light Shine?
In John 8:12, Jesus said “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”
Jesus is the light of the world! John Piper explains it this way:
“Jesus being ‘the light of the world’ means the world has no other light but him. If there is going to be a light for the world, it will be Jesus. It is Jesus or darkness. It means, therefore, that all the world, and everyone it, needs Jesus as their light.”
When we accept Jesus, we have his spirit within us. He is our light, the one that shines through us. Thus, our ability to light up a room is totally dependent upon our relationship with Jesus. The more we know him, the more we are able to receive God’s love. As we experience this love, our light grows in strength and brilliance.
Like my granddaughter, we too can shine. He truly is our light source. I believe he is the answer to any darkness, baggage, or cynicism that plagues our lives.
Today, begin with one small step. For me, God leads me to scriptures as I blog and share life stories. As God’s word penetrates my heart, I pray my light grows brighter. What action can you take that deepens your relationship with Jesus? Let your light shine forth!