My little one discovered fireflies again this summer.
It is always a joy for me to watch her re-remember those gentle little creatures which light the night as they flutter from one place to the next shining their bright little light everywhere they go.
The same question persists every year from my little, “Why aren’t they afraid of the dark?”
I, too, am mesmerized by fireflies because they seem to command the night.
They don’t stay huddled together, creating one big mass of light-- one indistinguishable from the next-- like I so often want to do with my church friends, instead of branching out into the darkness.
No… fireflies seem to intrinsically know their mission, and off they fly into the night.
They aren’t afraid of the darkness because the light is deep within them.
I wish it was that easy for me to fly off into the different, the unknown, the foreign... I know that Jesus has called me to be like the firefly.
He has called me to be undaunted, fearless, and relentless at seeking the lost.
He has called me to be passionate, zealous, and unbridled at sharing His love.
He has called me to shine His light brightly.
It is challenging for me to branch out of that already lighted place where the Gospel is flourishing, where hearts are already turned towards Christ, to go to that place or those people who don’t know Him, but it is especially difficult for me in regards to my children.
I want to hide them away from the craziness in the world.
I want to filter their friends down to a list of puritan Jesus lovers.
I want to clip my oldest child’s mission wings and keep her near.
But Jesus has called them to reach out to others who are not like themselves, as well; He has called them to reach out to those who are still broken, living in the darkness.
Though it is difficult, mom, the impact of our calling is two-fold and weighty. As Christians we are called to share the gospel. And as Christian moms, we are called to not hold onto our children tightly but to release them into this world so they can share that same light with others who are far from God: sometimes “others” look just like you; sometimes they look like me, but more times than not they look different; whoever they are, they are theirs to set alight from God.
The Message translation captures it well with, “You’re here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. We’re going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. If I make you light-bearers, you don’t think I’m going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I’m putting you on a light stand. Now that I’ve put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you’ll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven” (Matthew 5:14-16 Msg).
So, mom, be like the firefly.
Travel to a grocery that’s not in your backyard.
Encourage your children to join teams with people not like themselves.
Schedule play dates with the un-churched, non-Jesus-lovers.
Mom, today I challenge you to embrace your calling. Shine His light brightly wherever you go, and release your children into the world so they can set alight those they meet and watch how the children of the world look to your family and become mesmerized by the beauty of the light that shines in you which is the true light of Jesus Christ.
Word of the Day:
Now that I’ve put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you’ll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven.” Matthew 5:14-16 (MSG)
Lord, thank you for the Light who lives in me, who shines brightly through me. Though I know that I am to be the light in this world, sometimes it is difficult to push through my fears. Today, I ask Lord that you give me courage to venture away from the cluster of light, to illuminate the colors in the world and allow men to see the beauty of your face in the light of your glorious grace, in Jesus’ name, amen.