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July 15, 2019, 10:21 AM

Shine Bright Like a Firefly?

One of the memories that stands out to me about my childhood is playing outside all day and even after dark in the fields or under street lights. We were poor growing up so we didn’t have all the tech and gadgets that some of the other kids had and sure not what kids have access to today. I can recall playing outside after dark with my brothers and catching fireflies, or as we called them, lightning bugs. We would spend what seemed like hours chasing them and collecting them in a jar just to watch them glow. (Sometimes one would accidentally get smooshed on us and we would glow too.) This special memory was brought to my mind a short time ago as my wife and I walked out into the back yard to steal a quiet moment and reflect on how amazing God’s blessings are in our life. It was at that moment we simultaneously saw a lightning bug glow. We both said to each other, “Oooh! Did you see that?!” It was almost as if God was showing us yet another amazing blessing in the revelation of His glory in His creation. Once, again the lightning bug lit up and we continued to drink in the moment. A third time, the little bug performed for its audience. Then, seemingly from out of nowhere, a bird swooped through like a fighter jet on a mission. Emily and I turned at looked at each other with shock as she said, “Well, that just happened.” We waited, hoping to see the glow of the firefly, to reassure us it had not become bird food. We waited for what seemed like an extended amount of time compared to the previous intervals between the glows, but nothing. Then, all of a sudden, there it was! The little lightning bug was still alive and glowing. I could almost hear angels singing as Emily and I rejoiced and celebrated the victory of the firefly. I know I used up a bunch of space and your time to tell that story, but I do believe there is a message in it for us. The lightning bug was simply doing what God created it to do. The glow emanating from the bug is a unique feature that it uses to communicate with other lightning bugs. In addition, this simple act causes many to be fascinated and give praise to God for His glorious creation. In Matthew 5:16, Jesus tells His audience to let their light shine so that people will see it and praise God. As Christians, we are to live a life that reflects the glory of God like the moon reflects the sun, shining like a city on a hill or a lamp on a stand. In doing so, there are a couple of things to keep in mind. First, similar to the lightning bug, the light shines the brightest when it’s surrounded by the darkest night. So next time you find yourself wondering why God has allowed your circumstances to be what they are, remember you were created to shine. Lights in the dark have provided guidance to people traveling, ships sailing, and peace to those who are afraid. Secondly, remember, that like the bird that attempted to make the firefly a bedtime snack, there is a real and ever-present enemy that seeks to steal, kill, and destroy. All you have to do to make yourself a target is what you were created to do – shine the light of God. Jesus teaches in John 15:18-19 that the world hated Him and therefore because Christians are not of this world, the world will hate them as well. Remember, the Light came into the world but the world hated it because it exposed the sin that is done in the dark. Don’t let circumstances determine who you are, do what you were created to do and SHINE BRIGHT like a firefly!


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