Seeing Light Amidst the Darkness
“And so we have the prophetic word confirmed, which you do well to heed as a light that shines in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts...” 2 Peter 1:19
What do you see when you look around? At times I get so wrapped up in all of the things that need to get done each day - my list, the chores, and a few stolen moments of rest in between all of my running around – that it seems these things are the only things that occupy my mind on a given day. But, I find when I retreat to my garden all of those things fade away. Now, my garden is not a magical place, but it does transport my mind to where I am free to think on the beauty of God and His Majesty in a greater way then when I am confined in my basement sorting laundry. And for some reason my heart just wants to speak to God when my hands are in the dirt and surrounded by things which have grown before my eyes from seeds which show the incredible creativity of God.
These following verses in Romans really spoke to my heart today as lately I have been getting bogged down with tasks that have just gotten me by from day to day. Read carefully what they say:
“For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse, because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Professing to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man—and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things. Therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves, who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.” Romans 1: 20-25
I have to admit, it is my tendency to start to focus on my tasks and completely forget about how God is involved in each of the things placed before me. But, last night as I went out to pick beans I realized it had been a few days since I had retreated to this sanctuary of sorts and focused on something greater- Someone greater – than all of the things on my to do list.
There is somethings about gardening that has fascinated me for many years. When I was young I have fond memories of my grandfather's tulip garden, filled with many varieties which he himself hybrid. I also have memories of the large gardens my parents used to plant when I was younger. Theses memories were hidden in my heart for a long time while I pursued dreams amidst manicured lawns and cement sidewalks. But, to my delight God has shown me that the purest form of worship my heart rejoices in, is that in the dirt. For others people those natural forms of worship may take place while holding a baby, hiking in nature, visiting an elder care home, taking care of animals, or playing music, but for me the soil of the earth is my where my soul is drawn back to worship the Lord.
It is sad to say that many in our society do not see God in these things but instead substitute them into their lives as gods of sorts. Our human nature is meant to worship and we all seek light amid this dark world we live in. Jesus alone is the source of the light our hearts yearn for and the things that draw us into worship are the conduits of His Light. Through the age old prophets, God has revealed to us through the Old Testament who that Light was to be and how we would recognize Him, we just need to pay attention.
Getting distracted from the Light and focusing on the light sources is a trap we as Christians need to beware of not to fall into. We should heed the Light that shines in the dark place of this world because it will not only help us now while we are surrounded by darkness in this world, but it will also help us to recognize the Light when He returns and asks us to follow Him into eternity.
Putting yourself into places where your natural form of worship can be realized is key to keeping your eyes on the Light. No matter how busy you are, there is always enough time to steal yourself away to worship God and focus on the Light of Christ. The darkness of this world is encroaching more and more each day and we cannot afford to let it distract us from a daily bout of worship – that is concentrated time of looking on the Light. We need to focus on the true Light most of all so we do not become accustomed to the dark and are no longer comfortable with the brightness of the Glory of God.