Matthew 5: 15: Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.16: Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

Night is a dark time.  It takes candles to brighten.  It takes light greater than the darkness.  In our own homes, we need light in the evenings.  Surely in our own house, we should shine brightest.  Yes, darkness even will come on our own homes and families.  They need light too.

Oklahoma has been pummeled with storms.  They take away our brightness.  They cause days to be dark.  They destroy what is good and healthy.  In the darkness, we have more questions.  Storms make day seem like night.

Over the years, I’ve had companies close and shift management styles leaving me to scramble for the next assignment.  Betrayals of trust rampant in the politics of power bring on dark adjustments.  It happens.  Life happens.  Darkness can mask real value in life.  Darkness can shade goodness so it is hard to see clearly.

Beside the walk up to my front door are some battery powered lights.  They are charged by the rays of the sun during the day.  In the winter, they do not shine for very long in the evening as they get little charge.  They are in a fairly darkened walkway, except in the Summer. One evening, I noticed they stayed on quite long into the evening.  The sun had hit them more fully than it has for months.  Days can change.  We can change how long the light stays bright.

Our light to the world is like those solar powered batteries.  When we spend a lot of time with the Son, our light stays lit longer in the darkness.  We are able to light up the darkness for longer when we spend longer with Him.  God gets the credit as the source and energizer.  Our seasons of light are determined by our choices.

No matter the source of darkness, our light can shine.  Storms, seasons, and the shade of disappointment all create darkness.  A little light helps us to see again the blessing and value and vital strength of life.  Love of family did not move, it just is shaded for a moment.  Strength of heart did not dissipate, it is just over in the corner under a cloud.  Friends did not abandon, they just stepped into a darkened room for a day.  Turn on the light.

ACT! Take some time to get a full charge.  If you have had more Winter sun than Summer Son, you need to actively seek His face.  Take an extra 10 minutes a day this week to charge up on Christ.

PRAY! Father, this is Your hour.  Let us get fully aware and embraced by Your presence.  Cause Your Holy Spirit to breath gently into our lives.  Let the light of Your Son, Jesus to come into us and strengthen our souls.  Help us to let that light then shine across our families, our homes, our neighborhoods, our workplace, and our community by your influence.  Help us to see through the darkness into lighted corners escaping our attention.  Show us value and blessing that is hiding in the darkness.

Meet Jesus In The Morning On The Mountain Matthew 5

teachingtwoMatthew 5:1-2 And seeing the multitudes, he went up into a mountain: and when he was set, his disciples came unto him: And he opened his mouth, and taught them, saying, Blessed….

Life has had some tough turns in the journey of the last 13 months.  They are violent.  They are hard. They are just not nice.  Life can be like that.

Life has had some great moments in the journey of the last 13 months. They are beautiful.  They are fulfilling.  They are comforting.  Life can be like that.

In the hardness and in the beauty, life is meant to be lived.  Life is not a spectator sport.  Engage.

This morning is a calm spot.  Not that there is not an hundred items and more waiting to be tended.  Water seeped up into the vents of the house the other day in a downpour.  It is gone, but repairs need completed and insurance company contacted.  A major weekend seminar went well and now I need to write many thank you notes and get ready for the next thrust into another community.  Business contracts are calling for attention for project plans and content curation.  But it is the morning and I refuse to address any of this right now.

With all of the multitude of people, Jesus took the time to “set” himself.  The transcription of Matthew tells us “when he was set his disciples came to him”.  Then and only then did he “open his mouth and begin to teach them.”

Imagine this moment.  Thousands of people are crying out for prayer, food, and healing.  Emotions are high as the more pushy folks demand front row seats.  The politicians are getting their entourage in position for high crowd visibility. Jesus is moving and hasn’t settled into a spot.  The dignitaries are miffed because they don’t know where to sit or who to push out of position.  Some are purposefully hanging to the rear not wanting to be seen but wanting to be close enough to hear.  They are hopeful and fearful.  On any Sunday morning in a large group this is repeated.  In those cases, everyone knows where the speaker will be and just moves to their moment and place of prominence or hiding.  Jesus is in motion.  He is unpredictable.

Sometimes in my prayer in the morning I feel like one or all of these people.  There are days I am positioning myself to be seen and heard by the Father.  Other days I am quiet and contemplative and want to lurk unseen in prayer.  Always I want to be close enough to hear some message of hope from my Dad that will give me a boost for this day.  I want to meet Jesus on the mountain in the morning.  I want to be blessed.  I want to be close when He opens His mouth to pour out blessing.

Prayer: Father of Jesus, You are also Father of me.  This morning, I really want to meet with You.  Life is tough and life is secure and life is frightening and life is momentary and life is stable.  It is a mishmash of emotions that bring me to Your mountainside.  Out here where life is lived, please meet me.  Meet me on my mountain.  It is a tough climb this morning.  Bring me to a settled spot to listen.  Meet me on the mountain this morning and speak blessing over my angst and anger and hopes and dreams and goodness and evils.  Meet me on the mountain in the morning.