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What kind of light are you?
Pastor's corner
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Jesus said in Matthew 5:16 that you are the light of the world and in verse 16 He commands us to let our light shine before men that they might see our good works and glorify the Father in heaven.
I wonder how many people have really taken the time to meditate on these words spoken of Jesus.
Jesus is saying we have a purpose and mission as children of God. We are to give light to the world. In other words, as Christians we should have an effect on the world rather than the world having an effect on us. You have to understand that light illuminates and causes darkness to vanish. Light and darkness cannot dwell in the same place.
We must understand that as children of God we are different from the world. We are the light of the world. We are to live our lives in such a way that men may see the light of Jesus Christ in our life. Throughout the Bible, light represents righteousness while darkness represents unrighteousness. Therefore, Jesus is asking us to let our righteousness, our light, be seen among men. I know we do not like for people to watch us, but they are supposed to watch us. The purpose in people watching us is not for them to give us praise or glory, but to glorify our Father in heaven. It is not about is, but it is about Jesus.
When I think about this commandment of God to let our light shine, I think about different kinds of light.
There are four lights that come to my mind that I think reflect many people in the church. First of all, there is candlelight. Candlelight is a small light that gives off light for one to see. This light will illuminate a small place and it is not very bright. But this light can easily be extinguished. All it takes to extinguish this light is a little wind. We have people in the church who are like candlelight. They don’t shine very bright and it does not take much to stop them from doing the will of God. Every time something happens they sit down. They cannot stand the storms of life.
Then there is a flashlight. It is a utility light. This light comes in handy. Whenever you need light, you can pull out your flashlight. It gives light wherever you point it. You can turn it on when you need it and turn it off when you don’t need it. Some people in the church are like flashlights. Jesus is handy to them. They pick Him up when they need Him and they put Him down when they feel like they don’t. You have to be careful with these types of people. You don’t know when their lights are shining. You have to approach them when the light is on. Most of the time, their lights are shining on Sunday morning.
Then, there is moonlight. It’s really not a light at all. The moonlight is simply the reflection of the sun. You must understand some people just reflect other people’s light. They walk in the shadows of others. If that person falls, they quit. If that person disappoints them, they give up and refuse to do what the Lord has called them to do. Jesus wants us to have our own light.
Finally, there is a beacon light. This light is designed to shine through all types of weather. It is a bright light. It is the light that shines from the lighthouse to guide ships to shore or planes to land. There are those in the church who are like beacons. They continue in the word of the Lord no matter what. They endure as a good soldier and realize that they have been called out of darkness to do a great work for the Lord. They understand their purpose is to be an example to all men.
So I encourage you today to let your light shine. We are the light of the world and we do not walk in darkness. We represent Jesus and our desire should be to help others find their way. Think about your life and ask yourself what kind of light are you.

Jackson is the pastor of St. Luke Missionary Baptist Church and the President of the United Ministerial Alliance.
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