My wife and I thoroughly enjoy the Christmas season. The smells, the music, the giving, the wonderful food, and the beautiful multi-colored Christmas lights all add to the rejoicing and celebration of the “new born King – Jesus”. The next best thing to do besides seeing many great Christmas church programs is driving through decorated neighborhoods and looking at the array of Christmas lights. It occurred to me that without the lights people could not really appreciate or enjoy the festive ornamentations.
I’m reminded of a story about a little village tucked away in Rjukan, Norway. The sheer mountains literally surrounding the village choked off any sunlight from October to March. Because of its location in the far northern latitude, Rjukan was a pretty bleak and depressing place to be during the winter months.
Some enterprising citizens felt that if they could install some very large mirrors on the mountainside to reflect the sunrays and beam sunlight into the town square it would add life and joy to the otherwise dark community. By placing these mirrors on machines that could rotate the mirrors to the proper angle to keep them aligned with the sun the citizens experienced energizing light at least twelve hours a day.
As Christians our joy and privilege is to reflect the true Light that came into the world over 2,000 years ago – Jesus the Christ. When he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” (John 8:12) He was giving mankind a solution to having the greatest gift of all – eternal life. The joy, peace, passion, gifts, talents, and hope that is within us is the light we need to share with a lost world. Without Christians willing to share their witness (light) with others people we will remain in darkness like the citizens of Rjukan, Norway before the mirrors were installed.
In Matthew 5:14 during the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus said to His followers to be, “the light of the world.” The Apostle John wrote extensively that Christ is the true light and he “shines in the darkness”. Friends, there is darkness all around us. Don’t leave the reflection of Christ to the paid professional pastors and missionaries. It is the responsibility of every Christian to be the light in our families, communities, place of business, and especially to those friends and extended family members who do not know Christ.
Jesus challenges all of us to reflect the light we know, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.” (Matt. 5:16) Jesus is the reason for the season. May you be the special Christmas messenger who can tell others about the One who can bring light into darkness through a personal relationship with Jesus!
Why do you think the analogy of light is used so many times in Scripture?
What other metaphors can you find in John and Matthew’s account of Christ?