A Light In The Dark
Updated: Oct 5, 2022
I CAN FEEL IT
When I was in elementary school, my 5th grade class did an overnight stay at a nature center. It was a lot of fun. On the second day, we did some spelunking (underground cave exploring). It was probably the most memorable thing we did.
We put on hard hats with lights, took some light snacks and a flashlight with us, and climbed down a huge hole in the ground to explore a cave. It was so fascinating! We learned about stalactites and stalagmites, got muddy, and even got to see an underground stream.
But the most memorable moment of that day was when, deep in the heart of the cave, we all turned our lights off. It was the blackest dark I'd ever experienced in my life. It was so dark I could feel it. I couldn't see my hand in front of my face. No matter how long I sat there, my eyes were never able to adjust to the complete lack of light.
Darkness had full sway over our group...until...
*CLICK* *CLICK*CLICK*CLICK* *CLICK*
Flashlights came on one after another restoring the hope that we were not utterly captive to the darkness any longer. It was a great feeling. It was a relieving feeling. It was a hopeful feeling.
I CAN SEE IT
In Genesis, we see the story of sin entering the world. Paul says it this way,
"Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned" (Romans 5:12, NIV)
From Adam and Eve, sin spread. Like a pandemic, it affected any and all people that came after them, including their children....ALLLL THE WAY TO YOU AND ME.
We often associate the color black with sin. It's because we think of sin as darkness and righteousness as light. And I think we'd all agree it's a good comparison. We can see how dark and evil sin is in our world. It doesn't take long. In fact, the Bible says that "people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil." (John 3:19, NIV)
This week, your kiddos will be learning about the story of Cain and Abel. Cain murdered Abel because of his jealous heart. It didn't matter that Cain was the first son of Adam and Eve. He didn't get a pass because sin was new to the world. It affected him just as it does you and me. It affects everyone (Rom. 3:23).
If we're honest, we can see sin's affect on our lives too. Every time we choose to go against God and his commands we sin. We participate in the darkness. Isn't that why we hide it? Ironic, isn't it? We want our sin to remain in the dark. We don't want the light shed on it. We want to sit in that dark cave and just let darkness win. But why?
Maybe we think it will eventually get better
Maybe we think we can be in light and darkness at the same time
Maybe we want our sin to just disappear
But it doesn't. All that happens is we sit in the dark longer. We get more comfortable with the darkness. It doesn't bother us as much anymore. Sometimes, we even go deeper into it because we want to get further from the light to make sure none of our sin is ever exposed.
I CAN FIGHT IT
God gave us a light, His one and only Son, Jesus. Jesus made it possible for us to find our way out of the darkness. 1 John 1:9 says,
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. (NIV)
We can be forgiven, purified, and made right before God. But it's still a choice you have to make for yourself.
I often tell the kids in our kids ministry that if I could pray them into heaven, I would. If all it took was a praying pastor, parent, or grandparent to rid me of my sin and secure the gift of eternal life in Jesus, I would be set. But that's not the reality. No one can make the choice for you. It's yours and yours alone. You're the only one who can turn on your flashlight.
But the great thing is, you still have a choice! God didn't leave us in the dark. He didn't get so frustrated with Adam, Eve, Cain and all the rest, that he abandoned the ones he created and breathed life into. He had a plan. He sent a Rescuer. He made a way. He offers it to all.
I CAN SPREAD IT
The worst thing about sin is that it has spread every where and affected every thing. But the LIGHT can do the SAME.
When we choose to shine our lights it impacts more than just ourselves. Your spouse, your children, your siblings, your parents, your co-workers, your neighbors, your church, your community will all be beneficiaries of that light in one way or another. Who knows, you may even help show others how to see the light in their own lives.
Mathew 5:16 says this,
[L]et your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven. (NIV)
It's time to quit sitting in the cave, in the dark, waiting for things to get better. Shine some light on it. Get back into fellowship with God, who loves you and gave his Son for you. Then ask God how you can help spread that light to all those around you. It will be hope. It will bring relief. It will bring joy. So hit the on switch. Do it today.