One of the things I love about living in the country is how much you can see at night. That’s ironic because it’s so dark in the country. You can’t see what’s right in front of you, obviously, but when you have a light, you can see it for miles around. Out in the country where I live, you can see the lights of several small towns, and the very large bright glow on the southern horizon is Wichita far in the distance.
In the daylight, lights don’t make much difference. But at nighttime, when there are no other lights around, a light can’t be hidden.
I have come as a light to shine in this dark world, so that all who put their trust in me will no longer remain in the dark.
This is something Jesus said to a group of people who had gathered to hear him. It’s a bold claim. I’m not sure if anyone else in the history of the world has ever made such a claim. If someone said this today, very few people would listen, I think.
But the Bible and other historical documents have proven over and over again who Jesus was (and is). And the changed lives of those who follow Him are evidence that He speaks the truth–that He is the light.
We get turned around, though. We get hung up on following other men and their interpretations of Jesus’ words. We prefer this preacher to that preacher. We prefer this church to that church. And that’s fine. There’s nothing wrong with your preferences, as long as your faith is in the right place.
A religion or a denomination has never been the source of light. Jesus has always been and always will be the light that guides us, and if you follow Him, you’ll never be lost. Even when you feel like you’re wandering in circles, you won’t be lost because you’ll be right where He wants you.
What does it mean to follow Jesus? It means to do what He does, to think how He thinks, to live how He lived, and to see life the way He saw it. And how do you know all that? Well, why do you think we have the Bible?
Following Jesus isn’t a mystery. Everything we need to know about being a Christ-follower is laid out in Scripture. It won’t just occur to you. You have to read it. You have to study it. You have to make the Bible an active part of your life.
Then, when the darkness of the world surrounds you, you’ll be a light in the darkness because you’re holding on to Jesus’ light. And the best thing about a light in the dark? It draws others to it.
If you believe in Jesus, why don’t you follow Him? If you call yourself a Christian, why don’t you pattern your life after Him? No, it’s not easy, but living life isn’t easy. It’s far better to live life for a reason, and when the reason is Christ, your life will accomplish far more than you ever could have without Him.