Walk in Light
Today’s Gospel reminds me of a song that says, “let your little light shine, shine, shine.” When we become children of God we are to shine. Darkness leads to sin, death, lies and separation from Jesus. Light leads to truth, holiness, generosity, sacrifice and virtue. “A city set on a hill cannot be hidden.” —— Matthew 5:14. Once we commit our lives to Jesus and let our light shine publicly, there is no turning back. Our lives can no longer be hidden once we step out in faith as witnesses for Jesus on the job, in the neighborhood, in the public arena, etc. When we come into the light, to let the world know that we live in Jesus, the Truth (Jn 3:21; 14:6), people are watching us to see whether we will falter or stay faithful to Jesus.
By our deeds we are to influence the world for good. We can no more escape notice than a city set on a mountain. We should always try to be good and generous and to walk with giant steps along the way of holiness and love, to which we have been called. Love consists in sacrifice, virtue, and integrity. Try to be patient with trouble persons, bearing in silence all the sufferings that may afflict your heart, spirit, and body. Keep in mind that by possessing Jesus, we become rulers of the entire world.
When we become disciples of Jesus, we need to have a taste that is pleasing to all. When salt losses its taste, it becomes useless. We as Christians, should always carry a taste, so that we can glorify God through our good works. Jesus wants everyone to say yes to his presence so that we can keep our taste and shine before all and attract everyone to the goodness of the Lord. If we fail in good works, we are as useless as flavorless salt or as a lamp whose light is concealed.
We should never conceal our light. If we let our light shine before men, and then turn away from following Jesus and turn back to a worldly lifestyle, we are “unfit” to give glory to the kingdom of God (Lk 9:62). The public credibility of the kingdom of God is at stake, and we are on display. We have put ourselves in a position where we desperately need the Holy Spirit, day by day and moment by moment, to keep us “set aflame and burning bright” (Jn 5:35). Satan will temp us to take a “breather” by stepping out of the hot lights into the darkness (see Jn 3:19); however, stepping away from Jesus is the devil’s trap. We must continually come to Jesus (Mt 11:28) and never move away from Him. “Fix your eyes on Jesus” (Heb 3:1) and let your little light shine.
Deacon Peter Smith serves at St. Mary’s/Holy Family Parish in Alabama, a religion teacher at Holy Family Cristo Rey Catholic High School in Birmingham, and a member of our Passionist Family.