During a recent power outage, I went searching in the gathering twilight for a flashlight in our small utility room. Finding one sitting handily on the shelf, I grabbed it and swung it around, flipping on its switch as I turned to leave. I stopped abruptly when I realized that no light was coming out of the flashlight.
I placed the non-working flashlight back on the shelf, making a mental note to replace its batteries, and looked for another one. After a moment of moving jars, dog food and tools aside, I found another one, again turning to go back into the other part of the house only to find that this flashlight didn’t work either.
I put this flashlight back and then looked for yet another light, beginning to think grumpy kinds of thoughts about the evils of using up the batteries in flashlights. Finally, I found another one, the light of which was faint but still helpful. I then used it to light candles for my family to see by for the rest of the evening.
The next day I snuck back into the utility room, quietly replaced all the batteries in all the flashlights, and either moved them up a shelf or hid them behind things so they wouldn’t be such tempting playthings for my children.
The next instance of battery failure occurred just a few days ago. The back porch light had gone out and since its bulb was a special saline bulb, I hadn’t been able to just replace it with a regular light bulb. I recalled a box that I had left outside at the side of the house and needed to retrieve. I grabbed a flashlight (the batteries of which I had replaced only a couple of weeks before), and headed outside. When I stepped outside, I heard, or thought that I heard, something that sounded like a snort and a snarl.
I stopped and listened for more noises, wondering if I really had heard what I thought I had heard. All I could hear were the evening crickets, the slamming of a door in the next street over, and a distant cow bellowing.
Deciding that I must have imagined it, I walked off the porch and around to the side of the house. As I let myself out of the gate and walked to the front corner of the house, it suddenly seemed to me that I saw through the darkness the silhouette of a large black dog, dimly lit from behind by the streetlight across the road.
It apparently noticed me at the same moment. A growl began to resonate from it and it began to run towards me, its heavy feet pounding the pavement as it crossed the road. It quickly disappeared into the shadows of the tree and large bush that stood between us.
I hastily flipped the switch on the flashlight that I was holding but found to my horror that its batteries were dead. Somewhere in the shadows before me, a large growling dog was racing towards me.
Slipping into the tone of voice I use when one of our dogs has been caught being naughty on the carpet or has been chewing on my chair, I barked gruffly, “Bad dog! Bad!”
To my surprise, the sound of the charging animal stopped. Then I could hear the sound of it retreating, then saw it again as it emerged in the light of the streetlight and then into the shadows beyond. “Whew!” I thought. “That could’ve been scary.”
Of course, the moral of the story is NOT “When in doubt, growl louder than your foes.” Rather, it is what light does and can do.
In continuing to refuse the light of Christ, the world continues to be shrouded in a moral, intellectual and spiritual darkness. In fact, the Bible says, “The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the Gospel of the glory of Christ, Who is the image of God” (2 Corinthians 4:4 NIV).
However, instead of giving His creation over to the darkness it generally chooses in exerting its self-will, “God, Who said, ‘Let light shine out of darkness,’ made His light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ” (2 Corinthians 4:6 NIV).
As I walked in the darkness around my house, I desperately wished for light, knowing that my desperate wish in that moment may have come too late to help me in that potential crisis.
If spiritual darkness surrounds your life right now, will you turn to the One Who can bring light to your life before the fangs of fear and the crushing jaws of despair overpower you? The light of God’s love is a life-changing and, frankly, a life-saving power. You are invited to share in it, for He will redeem any life truly turned over to Him. And we know, for He has said it, that the power that raised Jesus from the dead can fill your life and light your way as you trust in Him.
I really enjoyed this article! I thought it was beautifully written, using a great illustration of the dangers of walking in the dark. (smile)Yes, we want to be walking in the light as He is in the light. Blessings, Sharon