How Bright is Your Light? | February 25th, 2019
It was 1939. The Swarovski company had a crystal-cutting factory in Austria with the vision to make “a diamond for everyone” by making crystals affordable.
World War II had started and Swarovski was now required to manufacture binoculars and other optical products for the military. They developed a unique scientific process using a blue metallic coating for optical lenses. This sparked the idea to make a crystal stone more radiant.
The Invention of Aurora Borealis
After the war was over, the company experimented by coating crystal rhinestones with a micro-thin metal sheet. Manfred Swarovski, the grandson of the
These stones, which radiated the external light, became very popular during the 1950s as they began to be incorporated into the creation of necklaces, earrings, bracelets, and brooches.
Depending on how you angle Aurora Borealis, light is reflected differently. Angle it toward the sun and it shines much more brightly.
I have noticed this effect when I wear my 1950s Aurora Borealis ring I repurposed. It got me thinking about how well it relates to our spiritual lives.
Just like the sun’s effect on Aurora Borealis, when we angle ourselves toward Jesus, God’s Son, His light is reflected so much more brightly in us. On our own, we have no natural light. When we shine in the darkness, it is only because of Jesus reflecting His light in us and not because of anything we have done in our own power.
When my husband, Michael, and I go for our walk each evening, we always take notice of the landscaping in the front yards of the homes in our neighborhood as we love to get new ideas for sprucing up our own yard.
It was getting near dusk one evening and I noticed that the lights bordering a neighbor’s walkway were very dim. I asked Michael why anyone would want dim lights. I thought to myself, What’s the point? He explained to me that they are solar-powered. On cloudy and rainy days, the sun is blocked, diffusing the strength of the sunlight, making them dim.
The lack of sunlight greatly impacts their charging ability. If the solar lights do not receive a full charge for many days in a row due to several cloudy days, it affects the life and efficiency of the battery. However, when the sun finally comes back out again for prolonged periods of time, the batteries charge back up and the lights begin to work at full capacity within a few days.
Charging your Spiritual Battery
The more time you spend with Jesus studying His Word, making time for prayer, and allowing Him to speak to your heart, the more your spiritual battery is charged up so you can reflect Him brightly. He helps you change inside so your thoughts, character, and actions can be more like His. It is not instant, however. It is a continual process that intensifies in brightness the more time you spend with Him until you are with Him in eternity.
So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord—who is the Spirit—makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image. 2 Corinthians 3:18
When others see you as a living example of Jesus, they experience His power through you. When your character and actions reflect Him, they know that Jesus is real. His love is real. His joy is real. That is how others can come to know Him…when the brightness of His glory shines through you.
Know that when you shine brightly in this dark world, you stand out! People will be drawn to you and will want to know what is charging your battery to make you so radiant. The brightness of your light gives you the perfect opportunity to share Jesus’ love and joy with others.
Here are three practical ways you can shine more brightly to reflect Him…
Words are powerful. They have the power to destroy as well as the power to build up. Your words can be filled with bitterness or blessing, cursing or compliments, or can be loving or lashing.
It is only by the grace of God that you can control your words.
People can tame all kinds of animals, birds, reptiles, and fish, but no one can tame the tongue. It is restless and evil, full of deadly poison. James 3:7-8
If you struggle with your tongue, ask the Holy Spirit to help you be more conscious of what you say. And read your Bible every day. When your heart and mind are focused on what is good and pure, your words will reflect it.
Use your words to build people up, not tear them down. Take time to think before you speak so you shine with your words, speaking grace and kindness to those who are listening.
Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. Ephesians 4:29
It has been God’s intention from the beginning for us to be a blessing to others. He has given each of us unique skills and talents to glorify Him by doing good works, reflecting His character. If you enjoy cooking, teaching, gardening, are good at organizing, love working with numbers, kids, or the elderly…whatever it is, there are many opportunities out there for you to volunteer your time.
When you serve others, you are living out your faith by giving of yourself to show your gratitude to God for all He has given you. The biggest reason people don’t have the time or energy to serve others is that they are preoccupied with their own agenda, big dreams, and personal pleasures.
Good works honor and glorify God by demonstrating His work of love in your life. You show that your faith is genuine when you obey God by unselfishly giving of yourself to others.
Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. Matthew 5:16
If you are not living in the light, you are in the dark. John 1:5 says: The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it. If there is no light shining from your life, either you do not have a relationship with Jesus or you are bringing dishonor to Him with your actions.
It is not effective to try to tell people that Jesus has the power to transform lives if you are proclaiming to be His follower yet living an openly sinful life. If you claim to be a Christian, it is your responsibility to allow Christ to shine through your actions. You are different from the rest of the world when you belong to Him.
This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light and in him is no darkness at all. If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not live according to the truth. 1 John 1:5-6
You are in the light when you take a stand against anything that contradicts God’s Word. Hard to do? Very. Especially in this culture which we now live of incredibly skewed morals and extreme non-judgmentalism. The popular way of thinking today is what you often hear: “What makes something right is how I feel about it.”
That is why it is so important to make it a priority to spend time with Jesus so you can know right from wrong when the world is telling you otherwise. When you are walking close to Him, He will give you the supernatural strength you need to stand for Him and live a life that reflects His values.
For the eyes of the Lord range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him. 2 Chronicles 16:9a
It is God’s desire for you to live a life that reflects Him, His values, and His goodness so others will come to know the deep love and real joy He has for them just as you have experienced. He does not want anyone to leave this earth without knowing Him.
Just like those lights bordering our neighbor’s walkway, you are also “solar-powered.” You need the Son to keep your light from growing dim. Stay angled toward Jesus, the brightest Light of all, and He will keep you fully charged to share His radiance with the world.
Sparkler #1: Prayer
If your light seems to be dim, ask God to reveal the changes you need to make in your life so you can charge your battery and shine more brightly for Him.
Sparkler #2: Action
Find a place where you can use your skills and talents to serve so you can reflect Jesus’ light, sharing his love and joy with others.
Sparkler #3: Challenge
When opportunities present themselves, be bold and take a stand for what you know is right and true, not according to how you feel about something or the world’s values based on tolerance, but according to God’s values based on His inerrant Word.
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