This morning, I woke up in a disgruntled spirit, which sought to wrestle with every past demon, and every past persecutor. But there was only one problem, none of these 'bad guys' were present. Only my wife, and my daughter, were in the path of Psycho-Storm Tom.
Isn't that how it always goes? We tend to fight the inflictors of our past wounds through the people present in our lives.
Through all this, the light of our faith, in Jesus Christ, is hidden under the bushel basket of our pride, our arrogance, our over-sensitivity, and our wounded selfishness.
Yet, there are 4 sure ways to overcome our inner darkness and spark the 'Light of Christ' within! 4 Sure ways to immediately shine in the Love of our Merciful Savior.
"If you remove from your midst oppression, false accusation and malicious speech...then light shall rise for you in the darkness..." Isaiah 58:7-10
When I first read this verse, grace flooded my spirit, quickly overcoming my selfish reservations, and I responded to God's prompting by immediately embracing my wife and daughter. Real, sometimes silent, heartfelt apology is an immediate source of reconciliation, and inner peace. When we repent, God's Mercy is immediate. We must, therefore, be immediate in acts of reconciliation--even if they are painful, humiliating, or initially rebuffed.
The spark of bestowing forgiveness, and seeking forgiveness, is the first sure Way.
"His heart is steadfast; he shall not fear. Lavishly he gives to the poor..." Psalm 112:4-9
Sometimes we can give generously from abundance. Sometimes we cannot. What we can always give, however, is what little time we have, what little powers of attention we have, in presence, in a willingness to listen, in an effort to understand. Darkness is the terrible void of compassion in suffering.
Light is the presence of someone who cares, who is present, while we bear our cross. Charitable Friendship, charitable companionship, mere charitable presence, is the second sure Way.
"For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ, and him crucified." 1 Corinthians 2:1-5
The third surefire Way to spark the 'Light of Christ' in the world is to evangelize through our cross. Nothing witnesses more powerfully to the Mercy and Truth of Jesus Christ than a person who suffers with compassion, truthfulness, faith, hope, and the Love of Christ on His Cross.
Graced courage in bearing one's cross sets fires in the hearts of others!
"Just so, your light must shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your heavenly Father.” Matthew 5:13-16
The fourth surefire way to spark the 'Light of Christ' in our world is to live in the Truth of family. The Holy Trinity is family in Father, Son, and Spirit. The Church is family, through baptism, in brothers and sisters, adopted, in the Cross and Resurrection of Christ. As human persons, we are all family in the Love of the Creator.
To acknowledge this, and act upon it, is to light a fire, bright and searing, in the Love of Jesus Christ.
Isn't that what our faith is all about?