“Bye Muffin! Bye Cookie!”
Farewells are chimed from the back seat to the seasonal inflatables as we drive past. Last year a neighbor in walking distance from our house put out inflatables for the month of October and our kids love them. As I personally don’t have a place to store giant inflatable creatures year-round, I love that we can add nightly walks by this house on our Fall To-Do List and call it a day. On one recent romp, it was still early and the creatures didn’t appear to be glowing as brightly. I tried to address the questions, “Well, when it’s light outside, it’s harder to see the lights glowing. When it’s dark, we can see them better.” The question-asker ran off, momentarily satisfied, leaving me with my own thoughts – “Is that what it’s like for us as Christians: Can people see our lights shining brighter in the darkness even though they are equally bright in the day time?”
The light inside the inflatable is consistently bright – unchanged by its surroundings yet perceived differently depending on the external environment. Is that how I’m living right now? Do the people I work with have any idea that I’m a Christian? Would my neighbors be shocked to know that I’m called to love them as myself? Could my students tell you with any certainty that I care about them? I hope so because if they can’t see that when things are easy, why would they believe it when things are hard? Jesus himself calls us “the light of the world” (Matthew 5:14) and I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to shock anyone when the lights go out and I’ve got this light shining. I want them to know and feel that they are loved and cared for all the time; not just in tragedy, but when things are good.
Muffin and Cookie aren’t actually delicious baked goods, they’re dragons who had the misfortune of being named by a pre-schooler with sugar-conscious parents. As we face the increasingly busy last weeks of the year, I look forward to learning even more from this good God of ours who reaches us in even the most unlikely places.
“Everywhere I go, I’m gonna let it shine, let it shine! Let it shine! Let it shine!”