Christian Community

Saints…Lights…Darkness

The focus from Sunday a week ago got me to thinking about Saints or believers who are further down the journey with Christ and can shine a light in our lives or provide a sense of focus or direction.

A saint is a person who is recognized as having an exceptional degree of holiness or likeness or closeness to God. …the term also retains its original Christian meaning, as any believer who is “in Christ” and in whom Christ dwells, whether in Heaven or on Earth. – Wikipedia

Also we sang a hymn that has been a reminder of who can bring hope in the darkness

Brightly beams our Father’s mercy, From His lighthouse evermore,
But to us He gives the keeping of the lights along the shore.

Let the lower lights be burning! Send a gleam across the wave!
Some poor fainting, struggling seaman, You may rescue, you may save.

Dark the night of sin has settled, Loud the angry billows roar;
Eager eyes are watching, longing, For the lights along the shore.

Trim your feeble lamp, my brother; Some poor sailor, tempest-tossed,
Trying now to make the harbor, In the darkness may be lost.
– Let the Lower Lights Be Burning by Philip P. Bliss

Something struck me on Sunday and then again on Monday last week when I turned on the radio on my drive to work and instead of music playing they were talking about the tragedy in Las Vegas. A sailor is in need of a light house, and perhaps other lower lights to provide a bearing, the most when it is dark and stormy…there isn’t much need for a light house during the day. And it is the most difficult times in our lives that a ray of light can be something we need to keep us on the path or a person who is further along in the journey that can just be there and perhaps by their presence in our life provide a sense of direction.

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7 NIV

For me it was hard to hear about how quickly a group of people who were gathered at a music festival and had earlier sang God Bless America together were then fired upon from above and their world turned into a situation that is unimaginable for most of us. It was hard to go on with work and normal things maybe because it just seemed a little close to home. Not per se because of the situation, but that all those there were just living life and then this happened, and it was a reminder that every day is precious, that tomorrow is not guaranteed and that we are only on this earth temporarily. I pray none of us are ever involved in a situation like that, but sometimes things in our world like our health or other life events are no less tragic to us personally or to someone we love.

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33

One thing that gave me hope and was a gleam of light was that even in the midst of a terrible situation that there were brave men and women that selflessly helped others and did what they could and made a difference where they were at…they were a ray of light in the darkness of the situation. And I think that is what I can take courage in, that no matter the situation, despite how dark it is in our world that our Father is there, that he will walk with us, that he gives us brothers, sisters, fellow saints to take on the journey…which might sometimes be in a bright sunny meadow or sometimes it is in a dark and narrow path that is steep and dangerous, but regardless He is there and we can take hope in that.

I am grateful for those in my life who are Saints and who daily bring light and hope with them no matter where they go and I hope on my better days to be a Saint for others on this journey, in whatever the situation might be.

Trim your feeble lamp, my brother; Some poor sailor, tempest-tossed,
Trying now to make the harbor, In the darkness may be lost.

Let the lower lights be burning! Send a gleam across the wave!
Some poor fainting, struggling seaman, You may rescue, you may save.