If you watch the daily news on any station, you can easily be discouraged by a dismal painting of a picture that displays gloom, darkness and lack of hope. The number of murders, thefts, deaths, incarcerations, sex scandals, child pornography, etc., can leave a person wondering, “Is there anyone GOOD out there?”
Jesus called us to be a light. The city on the hill.
“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” Matthew 5:14-16
Let us do something this year,in 2012, to be light. Let us illuminate the world with good things. Let us paint a new picture for those who are hopeless, who have lost their faith because life just seems, well, overwhelming. Many have lost jobs. Many moms cry tears
over a kitchen sink for lack of food in the pantry to cook a healthy meal. Men are heartbroken when their efforts to provide for their family, once again, fall short. Children are confused by the tension and stress their parents bring into the home.
So what can you do in 2012 to make a difference? It can be small or big or in between, the point is – do something that will make a difference in someone else’s life that will bring hope, peace and joy. That after you have shown up in someone’s life, they will see the light! That the dark clouds that seem to hang over head will begin to break with sunshine. Cloudy days will roll away and bright blue skies will prevail.
Here’s a challenge for you this year:
- Buy 12 gift cards (any amounts) for either food or gas. Once a month anonymously or knowingly hand one out to someone every month. Someone that God lays on your heart, someone you know or a complete stranger. Just bless someone else in a tangible way. (Hint: keep these tucked in your purse or wallet, so they are always with you! You never know when God sends a person in need to you.)
- Four times this year, volunteer your time or talent. Do something for someone else that does not cost money, but can be a benefit for them, not you. It is not about a sales connection or promoting your self and your desires; it is all about helping them.
- Write a note with pen and paper. We have replaced a personal tool of communication with keyboards and emails. Buy 12 blank note cards and once a month, write a personal note to someone! Let God lead you. Ask him to put someone on your heart and mind. You may be surprised who comes to mind – kindergarten teachers, garbage men, lost friend or relative, someone whom you have a broken relationship with, a complete stranger (Just open the phone book!) Let your words be uplifting and encouraging and heartfelt.
- Cook a meal for a neighbor and join them for dinner. So many times anymore, we do not know our neighbors. We are a yard apart and do not even know the first thing about them. Let us break yard divisions and step over to our neighbors houses and develop relationships. Let us come out of these brick houses where we do our “own” life and instead build sidewalks with one another.
Do something this year to paint a picture of life and life more abundantly! Maybe choose one, maybe choose all four, but do something in 2012. At the end of 2012, may you reflect and see the good, see the light that shines from your life that now shines in others lives. Be light. Go illuminate.
“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” John 10:10