It seems, at least for the past two years, that June became a month full of heartbreak and tragedy. Now in July, ready to celebrate our nation’s independence, there is a tinge of sadness that accompanies knowing that beyond the patriotic picnics and flags that solidify our identities as Americans, there is still increasing opposition and division in our country and in our world. A world that turns in on itself and rejects Christ in the process. Though it feels crushing, we must always remember that our Savior has the final victory, and death will not reign over us in the end. And in the midst of these dark times, it’s important to hold onto every bit of light that we have both in each other and in the one who gives it to us.
Christ is our light, our initial source. And we have a duty to remain true to our identity in Him and be bearers of that light. We are called to bring the light of Christ to our brothers and sisters, especially in these times of darkness. For me, this does not always mean being the bubbly, perky Christian who has it all together and pulls perfectly relevant scripture out of thin air and leaves everyone feeling awestruck and inspired. I can’t do that. Sometimes, all we can do is hold a hand, lend a shoulder, occupy the same space, or offer a prayer. A light isn’t always a blinding beacon in a storm, but a dim little ember that is fed quietly until it can come together with other little embers to grow into a wildfire that consumes the world.
So, let the light of Christ shine through you in whatever way you can. By allowing the talents He has bestowed you with to manifest, to give glory to Him. Be a flame that feeds a soul, be the warmth and comfort that intrigues those who are stranded in the cold, and allow them to see our Savior and his love.
Most importantly, do not become discouraged if you are met with darkness that tries to block our light and dim us, to cover our lamps and smother our flame. Think of all of the saints who faced relentless persecution for their witness to the truth of Christ. They may have died before their time, but their names live on as memories of Christ’s love and truth. We must keep shining. The world is entranced in a cycle of death and hatred, and we cannot contribute. So even if it means enduring harsh winds that try to extinguish our flames and push us to our mortal death, our victory and our brightest light is the eternal Christ who will never fade away.
“The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it” John 1:5
*On a separate note, I would like to take a moment to recognize the talents of my dear friend Jessica, whose picture is featured on this post. You can check out more of her photography on Instagram @jess.takin.pics.