Tag Archives: let your light shine

Heartaches

I missed writing last week. I had so much on my mind. So much, that I never found enough clarity to voice what I was feeling. Ever been there? Well…it’s no fun, especially when you have had to watch something happen from the sidelines, with no ability to alter what was happening. When it’s simply a movie, you have the comfort of knowing that it was not real life. It didn’t happen. You can shake it off, decide whether or not the suspense was worth the ticket price, and move on.

Not so when watching real life. I remember when I was young that my parents said it was not always “fun” to be right. I thought “Are you kidding? Uh huh!” I believe that all Christians are given one or more spiritual gifts. It’s biblical. Both of my parents had the gift of discernment, as well as some other gifts. It used to bug me to no end, when my mom said I needed to stop hanging around someone, because mom could see mannerisms and changes that meant that friend was headed into things that would not be good for me. Every time, yes, EVERY time, Mom was correct. I will be forever grateful for Mom’s discernment that kept me out of harm’s way.

As an adult, I’m finding I have my Mom’s discernment. Seeing what is about to happen if someone doesn’t change their path is always heartbreaking, especially when it proves true. This is the second time in 4 years that I was right about a situation, when I really wanted to be wrong. I now totally understand what my parents meant by “it’s not always fun to be right”. No, in fact, it can bring you to tears.

I am convinced that everyone on this planet needs to read 2 books by authors Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend. One book is called “Boundaries”. The other book is called “Safe People”. We need to learn how to properly set our own healthy boundaries, and then teach our children to do the same. We also need to know how to discern who is safe, who is not, and why. Yes, the “why” is important. Some people will never be safe. Others can fall into situations that mean they are not safe for a moment. Kids need to understand the definition of a “safe person”. It goes far, far further than not trusting strangers. Friends, even family can be unsafe. A parent can even be unsafe. It is so much easier to learn about boundaries, how to deal with unsafe people, and how to cultivate safe relationships before there is a problem, than to try to put a shattered life back together.

God cautioned us about pride. When someone has so much pride that they refuse to seek help from others, then they are destined to fall. When they don’t learn from their mistakes, they will continue to fall, and fall again. The problem is that many times, innocent children are taken with them. Our bad behaviors ALWAYS affect someone else. We may not notice, but it does. Always!!!

I encourage you to pray for today’s youth. They are being told that being moral is old fashioned, and pressured into sex, alcohol, and drugs. When I was in school, smoking was the big problem. Yes, the other stuff existed, but not like today. The drugs today are much more lethal, also. Whether or not you are a parent, I ask you to get on your knees for the kids of today. If you are a parent, communication is key to their protection. Many kids live in horrid home environments, also. Their stress levels are astronomically high. Many of these kids try to rise above their home life, but especially if they don’t have a support system, or if it’s not local to them, they don’t have the emotional maturity to deal with many things thrown their direction. Again…please pray for the kids of our country.

I personally know some of these kids for whom I’m asking you to pray. My heart is breaking. Thank you.

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What Are You Doing With YOUR Light?

The Bible tells us we are to be light unto the world. We are also told to not hide our light under a bushel. Therefore, I’m always surprised when Christians choose to huddle together, run, or point accusing fingers,  instead of choosing to disperse to spread light into the darkness of this world. Yesterday, I saw another example of this, which prompted me to ask the question, above.

Here was the situation…I’m not certain who started the idea, or if it was a few locations, or designed to happen throughout the country, but on April 11th, 2014, there was a “Homosexual Day of Silence” scheduled within some schools, and a resulting proposed “walk out” protest by Christian organizations. What was the problem, you ask? Well, here is the quote from the poster I saw on facebook.

“Keep your kids home, or walk out on April 11 – Homosexual Day of Silence. Radical propaganda push on kids. during this all-day event, school officials encourage students to be silent for the entire day as a sign of solidarity with the homosexual activist movement. Students are encouraged to wear special homosexual badges, stickers, and bracelets, which are often handed out at the school entrances that day. There are also pro-homosexual posters and handouts, and even workshops.” The poster goes on to state other activities.

Now, I will go on record to say that yes, as a Christian, I agree the Bible is very black and white, specific, concerning homosexuality. Therefore, I am totally against any school participating in this day, or it’s activities. I will also say , however, that I would be equally against a day where a specific Religion or political view was paraded around campus for a day, with the expectation that anyone with an opposing view was to remain silent for that day. I would also be against a day of any “anti-group” push, as those days only serve to divide everyone, show hate, and create bullies. School is not the place for any of these agendas…period!

However, I don’t think the correct response from the Christian community was to walk out. To me, that’s running from the issue. It’s teaching our kids to run from the issue. Instead of acting in a way that causes dissension, what about choosing actions for that day that show Christ’s love for all humans? What about arming your kids with kind words and deeds to show how much God cares for them? Send them to school equipped with the love of Christ. Why not first, teach your kids how to be strong in their beliefs, whatever those may be, teach them to love others, and teach them that sometimes, you must “agree to disagree” with your fellow man. I got news for everyone. Our differences in the world are far greater than if someone is gay or straight, black or white, Christian or not, male or female, conservative or liberal, etc.

I will also say that this is not an invitation for any readers to get into a discussion or fight over WHAT the Bible says about homosexuality. I know what the Bible says, I know what I believe. You, the reader, know what YOU believe. If you and I have differing views on the issue, we need to “agree to disagree”. I’m not entertaining a discussion, here on homosexuality. My post is about Christian responses to ALL controversial situations where we are required to make a choice to stand, run, or stick our heads in the sand and try to pretend the issue doesn’t exist. Unfortunately, more often than not, Christians are choosing to run, but calling their flight a silent voice of discontent. We are not called to be silent, run, or huddle together.

IF as Christians, we really want to turn this world to Christ, we MUST let our light shine in the darkness, instead of fleeing to “safe areas”. God didn’t tell us to huddle into a tight mass with our candles, but to GO tell the world! Go CHANGE the world. We are to dispel the darkness, not try to figure out how to live in a small dot of light in the corner. What do you do when the world around you is extremely dark? You have 2 choices. I would recommend doing both. 1. Gather together with 3 to 5 friends who also carry the light of Christ, before going into the darkness. There is always safety in numbers. 2. Instead of a candle, get torches, or flashlights…LED preferred. Times have changed since Biblical days. We are not required to take simple candles into the darkness! In short, have each person carry the brightest light possible. Arm yourselves! How do you grab the brightest light in these situations? That’s easy. It’s the same way you arm yourself! Immerse yourself daily in God’s Word, and in the things that are pleasing to God. This is more than reading a chapter of your Bible daily. Read several chapters, meditate over them, memorize scripture, listen to Christian music that uplifts your soul, pray several times, daily, SING to God. Read great devotionals, like those presented by Beth Moore. Yes, treat any chance during your day that you can as worship time. That’s how you make your individual light as bright as possible. Also…be REAL, not some plastic version of a Christian.

God didn’t call us to tear down others, to point fingers, name each others sins and faults, and act like the Pharisees. Trust me…I know my faults and my sins. I have them. So does everyone else on this planet. We are to spend our days trying to reach others for Heaven. We are not called to pick each other apart. Let the Holy Spirit show others what they need to change in their lives, and just love them! We are called to change this world for the better. We are not doing that, as long as we are shutting ourselves off from the world. We are also not doing that as long as we are standing over on the sidelines, judging each other. Get into the game! Get into the fight!

I applaud my teacher friends who have chosen to teach in public schools, as they are in the trenches of the fight, in my opinion. I also applaud all my Mom friends, who are raising Godly children and grandchildren. Thank you for teaching them to stand strong in their faith. I applaud anyone who stands up for their faith, and who tries to shine a light for others. Christian/Inspirational authors also are to be applauded! We need clean, moral books that inspire and encourage, whether they are devotionals, histories, mysteries, or romances. Yes, you can find Christian, Inspirational versions of romances!

For everyone…I ask…What are you doing with your light? Are you trying to help light the darkness so others can find their way, or are you huddled “safely” with others who would rather avoid the darkness? The more we spread out, and shine our light, the less darkness there is in the world, the tighter we huddle, the bigger the darkness. Personally, I would rather have tons of dimly lit areas, so I can see to make my way through this world, than one bright spot, surrounded by pitch black.

Please…use your light wisely! OK…I’m stepping off my soapbox, now.