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So, thanks to Miss Heather and the fact that it’s Easter weekend, I feel like talking about light.

(Ugh, WordPress. Why u no like my photos?)

What is darkness? The absence of light.

What is light? Try dictionary.com’s definitions.

Jesus is the Light of the world.

Light shines, but darkness does not understand it.

Close your eyes for a moment.

Looks pretty dark, huh?

Okay, open your eyes.

It’s pitch black. Your power’s gone out or something.

What’s the first thing you do?

Find some kind of light!

What happens when you turn on that flashlight, light that match?

Does the darkness go away?

No. At least, not completely.

What happens is that you focus on the light.

We talked about this in youth group once, even had an example.

My small group leader took us to her bathroom, one of the darkest places in her house.

We closed the door and turned off the light.

And it was completely black.

But then she turned on a flashlight, and we focused on that little bit of light.

It happens to Amir in The Kite Runner, too. He’s stuck in the back of an oil tanker, fleeing Afghanistan (or wherever; I forget). It’s completely black. He can’t even see his hand in front of his face!

He’s freaking out, but then he sees the glow of his father’s watch, and he finds hope in that tiny light.

Shine your light and let the whole world see, we’re leaving for the glory of the Risen King!

“For at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light”
Ephesians 5:8 ESV

“You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.”
Matthew 5:14-16 ESV

Psalm 18:28
You, O LORD, keep my lamp burning; my God turns my darkness into light.

Isaiah 60:1

“Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the LORD rises upon you.

Those are just a few verses dealing with shining your light. I’m sure there are more.

I really like a few of the quotes that I’ve found dealing wtih light (including Heather’s!):

We cannot hold a torch to light another’s path without brightening our own.  ~Ben Sweetland

Light gives of itself freely, filling all available space.  It does not seek anything in return; it asks not whether you are friend or foe.  It gives of itself and is not thereby diminished.  ~Michael Strassfeld

We are each gifted in a unique and important way. It is our privilege and our adventure to discover our own special light.  ~Mary Dunbar

You can’t have a light without a dark to stick it in.  ~Arlo Guthrie

People are like stained-glass windows.  They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in their true beauty is revealed only if there is light from within.  ~Elisabeth Kübler-Ross

Dare to reach out your hand into the darkness, to pull another hand into the light.  ~Norman B. Rice

In the right light, at the right time, everything is extraordinary.  ~Aaron Rose

In the beginning there was nothing.  God said, “Let there be light!”  And there was light.  There was still nothing, but you could see it a whole lot better.  ~Ellen DeGeneres

Light is good from whatever lamp it shines.  ~Author Unknown

Keep your flame lit, and you will never feel darkness.  ~J. Parker

The black moment is the moment when the real message of transformation is going to come.  At the darkest moment comes the light.  ~Joseph Campbell

All quotes taken from QuoteGarden.

I once read a story in a Chicken Soup for the Soul book that talked about lanterns.

You know what I mean.

Wait...

 No, not him.

Yay!

Yeah, more like that.

Only maybe not hanging.

Anyway.

The story was from a girl’s perspective, listening to her mother talk about a lantern.

The story’s stuck with me for a long time.

Here we go! Found it online! Yay, Google!!

Mom just smiled and lit the kerosene lantern we kept around in case of storms.
“You see this lantern?” she asked.
“Yeah.”
“What do you notice about it?”
“I don’t know.” I looked at it. The glass was covered in soot. “It’s kind of dirty.”
“But it still burns brightly inside,” Mom said. “You and Eric, even the kids who poured the perfume on him, you’re all like this lantern. You all shine a bright light. God can see it even if you need to clean the glass.”
(skip a little)
What Lauren said really shook me. Now I understood where her confidence was caming from. I remembered what my mom had said about the sooty lantern. I realized that Lauren just had a cleaner glass than I did. (…) From that day forward, I vowed to never forget my light.

(Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul page 45-47)

14 “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house.
~Matthew 5:14-15

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