One of my high school history teachers talked about an experience he had in basic training in the military. He said that one recruit was sent out a good distance from the other soldiers on a dark night, and nobody could see him or tell where he was. The recruit lit one cigarette, and immediately everyone knew exactly where he was. The small light of that one cigarette was enough to pierce the darkness of the night.
While that was a lesson on how to keep soldiers safe, the Bible speaks of a similar thing. John the Gospel writer tells us that Jesus is the “Light that shines in the darkness” (John 1:5, NIV). He came to penetrate the darkness of our world with the light of His salvation. Even in the darkest of situations, His light shines. In looking at Genesis 1:1-5, we see that Jesus, the Light of the World, created light first. That light pierced the darkness, changing it and separating it.
Jesus later said an interesting thing: “You are the light of the world.” That means that those of us who are followers of Jesus — those of us who believe that He came from God to bring light to the world — have a responsibility to be light. Just as the moon reflects the light of the sun, so we are to reflect the light of Jesus in our everyday lives. We reflect His light into the darkness around us. Matthew reminds us to let the light shine so that others will see God (Matthew 5:16). They, too, will receive the Light of salvation.
As I was working on my computer recently, I looked up and saw a rainbow on my wall. Sunlight coming through a window shone on a clock on my desk. The glass frame of the clock refracted the light into all of its beautiful colors. In the same way, when we reflect the light of Jesus, that can create beauty in the hearts of others around us. Let’s allow His light to shine!