True Illumination

“You are the light that gives light to the world. A city that is built on a hill cannot be hidden. And people don’t hide a light under a bowl. They put it on a lampstand so the light shines for all the people in the house. In the same way, you should be a light for other people. Live so that they will see the good things you do and will praise your Father in heaven.” – Matthew 5:14-16 (NCV)

These are my life verses. In high school, I realized how much Jesus’ Light shines through Christians, and I knew that my duty was to shine that Light in this dark world we live in. I had been so rebellious, so hurt and broken before I truly gave my life to the Lord during my freshman year of high school. I had claimed to be a Christian, when in reality, I was being a hypocrite and all the while, leading those who did not know Jesus astray. To this day, I regret the things I did, but that was then. And this is now.

I had gone through all my high school years, saying that Matthew 5:16 was my life verse and doing the things I knew were right: reading the Bible, praying, having a close group of Christian friends (accountability partners) and trying hard not to conform to this world. All of those things are great, and I really did grow during my high school years. God had taught me so many things, such as trust and patience.

But now, I’m in college, and I am still relearning the lessons that I learned in high school, only in different situations and different aspects. God is revealing SO MUCH MORE through my first semester of college as I experience living with a roommate, making new friends, keeping old ones, balancing social and school life, and doing the things I enjoy doing.

I thought I knew what true illumination was in high school, but now that I look back, I see that I kind of kept that Light to myself and to my close friends. In high school, I was concerned for others, but it wasn’t until I came to college that I realized how much people rely on other people. I began to be there for people who weren’t my closest friends, and because of this they became my closest friends.

A close friend of mine pointed out that encouraging others and being there for them was my spiritual gift, and for the first time, I realized how encouraging I had been to people in college, and even in my high school years. I was determined to continue this, not to draw attention to myself, but because I truly did care about people and I wanted to show Jesus’ love through me. If someone stays up until 4am, worried about something and needing someone to talk to, I don’t want them to just lose sleep over something. I have told my friends that if they need something, I don’t care what time it is or where I am, I will be there. If they need prayer, they can text me and I will meet them somewhere and pray for them.

True illumination does begin with Jesus coming into your heart. But it grows as you share that Light with others. Like the verse above says, “…a city on a hill cannot be hidden. And people don’t hide a light under a bowl. They put it on a lampstand so the light shines for all the people in the house.” Shining the Light of Jesus to this dark world we live in is what we as Christians are called to do. 

And so as I continually write in this blog about the numerous ways God’s Light has been revealed to me and how I have revealed His Light to this world, I pray that you are touched and blessed by the words written here. I appreciate your comments, questions, concerns, prayers, and, if you feel comfortable sharing, you can share any prayer requests you have and I will be glad to pray for you! 

God bless you all!

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