Sunday, December 30, 2012

Blessings of Walking in the Light

Psalm 56:13, 2 Corinthians 4:6

One of the unusual things I got to do as a missionary kid was to climb a volcano – well, actually, two volcanoes. In both cases, part of the climb was made in the dark, once to see the sunrise from the top and the other to see the lava flow in the dark. It’s hard to climb a little mountain path in the dark, even when you have a flashlight and a guide. You have to look at your feet so you won’t trip over roots or slip on loose rocks. You have to trust that the person in front of you is actually on a path. It’s so much easier to climb in the full light of the day.

That’s the difference between living in spiritual darkness and living in God’s light. 

If I were walking in darkness, I would be slipping, not knowing whether I was even on a path and, even if I didn’t know it, I’d be walking toward death. When I believed in Jesus, He rescued me from death. I know this intellectually, but I don’t really remember walking in darkness. God blessed me by saving me when I was a young child. For me – and I think all Christians, no matter how long they walked in darkness – the real issue is walking in the light.

To walk in the light is to walk in God’s presence. That means that the reason I can see where I’m going is that He is walking in front of me. I can trust Him because He is the light that shows me the path. Psalm 16:11 says,” Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.” (KJV)

These are the blessings of walking in the light.

The path of life: Jesus said He came to give us abundant life. (John 10:10) An abundant life is one that is productive, satisfying and not self-centered. I get to live to please Him and that is so much better than living to please myself.

Fullness of joy: Joy gives me strength. I can live that abundant life because I have full joy. I don’t give in to worry or fear or jealousy or moodiness when I’m joyful.

Pleasures for evermore: One of my struggles is giving in to minor pleasures that keep me away from that joy I just mentioned. Eating something right now and then not being hungry for a great meal later. Sleeping a little longer and then not having time to read my Bible in the morning. But when I walk in the light the minor pleasures fade away as I enjoy the true pleasures God has prepared for me. And they will last.

Climbing the volcano in the dark is worth it when you get to the top and see the lava shooting up into the sky or the sun rising over the nearby peaks. But the reason you do it is to see the light. The darkness is something you leave behind you when you get to the light.

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