No one who lights a lamp conceals it.
It’s not uncommon to read this passage and see ourselves as the lamp set on a lamp stand, shining for all to see. But what if we thought about Jesus himself being the brightly shining light? After all, he called himself the “light of the world”. He is not trying to hide from us or make us jump through all kinds of hoops before we discover him. No, Jesus wants to reveal himself to us. What a hopeful message! Jesus is our light and our salvation.
So what does the light of Christ help us to see? For one thing, it reveals more than an abstract set of facts about God. It shows us God himself: his mercy, his love, and his faithfulness. And when God reveals himself, he always touches our hearts even as he illuminates our minds. We see him a little more clearly, and our hearts are moved to follow him a little more closely.
For instance, as you read the parable of the prodigal son, you might imagine yourself as the young man coming home to his father’s embrace. Or a moving experience during Confession might help you to be more compassionate because you want to share the mercy you have received. God can use instances like these to shine his light into your heart—and by shining his light, to scatter some of the darkness in it.
You might not see clearly all at once. When you enter a dimly lit room, it may take time for your eyes to become accustomed to the lighting. But the longer you are there, the more bright the light appears, and the more clearly you can see. Similarly, the more time you spend in God’s presence, the more you will perceive all the ways he is making himself known to you.
God has been revealing himself since the beginning of time, and he is still doing it today! He is continually placing his light on a “lamp stand” because he wants to be known. You can trust his light to shine even in places you might not expect. So open your eyes to see him.
Word Among Us