“I have come as a light to shine in this dark world, so that all who put their trust in me will no longer remain in the darkness.” John 12:46
I was once in a small group where we were sharing how we came to Christ, and how thankful we are for what the Lord has done in our lives. People were telling their conversion stories, about being saved from wrong paths that they had begun to walk down before finding the Lord. But then there was a woman who said “Well I was saved when I was really young, so there’s not much that God has saved me from…” The group moved on from the conversation quickly, probably because we weren’t sure how to respond to that comment.
“There’s not much God has saved me from…” I was in shock, how could anyone say something like that? A woman who had been walking with the Lord for more than 30 years is not sure what the Lord has saved her from?
My story is no different than hers. I was saved on my front lawn with my sister when I was four years old. I prayed the prayer with my Dad, and have been walking with the Lord since that day. I wouldn’t say that at four years old I was on the wrong path, or heavy into some destructive behavior, but God saved me from a lot that day, a lot that I may not have even been aware of. I have no story of the Lord literally reaching into the fire and pulling me out, or hearing him speak from my hospital death bed and coming back to life, but my story is mine, and he’s saved me from a lot.
And I think when we hear these crazy testimonies of the Lord’s goodness in dire circumstances, we can almost become jealous of these people and the tangible hand of God in their lives. But those of us living rather unexciting lives have been saved from a lot on a daily basis, and just don’t realize it. I “no longer remain in the darkness,” and that right there is plenty for me.
I no longer remain in the darkness of the race toward perfection. I don’t have to be a perfect mother, perfect wife, have a perfect house, or perfectly put-together children. The Lord’s grace has saved me from that comparison. And not that I don’t fall into wanting that sometimes, but it doesn’t control my life. I’m living for an eternal goal, not a perfect life.
I no longer remain in the darkness of trusting in myself alone to handle it all. I don’t have to lean on myself when times get hard. I have a heavenly Father who is working out everything for my good, and I get to trust in that when all feels lost. I get to know that when I feel out of control, when my kids can’t seem to get it right, and when my life is racing forward faster than I want it to, God has got it all. He’s got it handled, and he loves me more than anyone on this earth ever could.
I no longer remain in the darkness of not knowing my purpose. When I look around at those who are not following the Lord, I wonder what they are working for. What is their motivation for working so hard, and creating so many lovely things, and memories, without eternity in mind? I am so blessed that I have a purpose. I raise my kids so they can walk with the Lord, and pull more people into a blessed life with Him. I clean my house so others can feel welcome and loved in my home, and maybe glimpse the love of Christ in that. I write this blog so God can speak through the gift he has given me. The glory is for Him not for me, and that is such a great burden to release to the Lord: He alone is my purpose.
I no longer remain in the darkness of loneliness. I am never alone. The God who created the world and everything in it wants relationship with me 24/7. When friends move away, or we get busy, I am never alone. I am never walking this busy life by myself because I always have a friend in the Lord.
I no longer remain in the darkness of anxiety. There are so many reasons to be anxious these days, and I can turn all of that over to the Lord. I still experience anxious thoughts, and feelings, but I know where to direct them. I know who has my back, and who is working everything out for my good.
“And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28)
If we trust in the Lord, we no longer remain in the darkness of not knowing who is in control of the world.
I no longer remain in the darkness of death. Yes, literal death. Because of the cross when I die I get to live forever with him in heaven. If that’s not enough to remember I don’t know what else to say. And I have learned this anew every time a fellow believer has passed away from this world. There is the sadness of missing them, but there is also such great joy in knowing that they are with the Lord. They are seeing the face of God, and he is so pleased with them, and that is such a comfort.
There is so much darkness that even seemingly happy people are in when they do not have the Lord in their lives. And we are free from that. There is so much freedom in knowing that we live in the light, and are free from darkness. What things has the Lord saved you from? For you, personally, what darkness do you no longer remain in? Thank the Lord for that, and pray that others will find this freedom, too. Maybe, through you.