Thursday, January 02, 2014

Shine Like the Sun

I have the immense joy of being man, a member of a race in which God Himself became incarnate.  As if the sorrows and stupidities of the human condition could overwhelm me, now that I realize what we all are.  And if only everybody could realize this!  But it cannot be explained.  There is no way of telling people that they are all walking around shining like the sun.  --Thomas Merton
I think the last line of the Merton quote above (found in Lighten the Darkness: An Advent Journey through Hope by Dena Douglas Hobbs) reinforces for me why God must be involved in spreading the Good News.

Too often, I think, our evangelism feels like a desperate membership drive.  We must find people (preferably young people, with children and money) to join our church so that we can survive.  This is not evangelism.  Evangelism is convincing another person that he or she is walking around, shining the like sun.

We are the light.  Do you believe it?  Do you even understand it for yourself?  Any grasp we have of that realization comes from God, and any convincing we do of other people, must also come from God.

You shine like the sun.  Do you act like it?  Do you even know it?  Do I?  Can you shine enough to convince someone else that he or she shines too?  I think it's only possible if God is involved -- in what you and I believe, in what we do, and what God is doing in the person in front of us.

What a blessing it is that God allows us to have a part in that!

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