|(photo from idtools.com)|
I was thinking. I know, I know – don’t be scared, I wasn’t putting too much effort into it.
When you picture a plant leaf in your head, what color is it? When you look at a real plant leaf, what color is it? When you look at a painting of a leaf, what color is it?
When I think of a plant leaf, I’m likely to tell you it looks green. But, for an artist to paint the very leaf I’m picturing in my mind, she won’t just be using green, even if the entire leaf is a perfect, green leaf. She’ll need white paint, too. The white paint will be used to show us where the light is shining on or through the leaf and reflecting off of it. If the light shining on it is brilliant, the artist will use more white paint, perhaps more white paint than green.
Hmmm. The Light that shines on and in each of us is the most brilliant light ever. How is it that so much of the colors that make us individuals still shine through?
I’ve been told that darkness is merely the absence of light. So, without light, we can’t see, not because we’re blind, but because our sight can’t fall on something that isn’t revealed by light.
The Light of the world shines on us, brilliantly. But, He also shines brilliantly through us. His intent is not to diminish our colors, but to enhance them! He made us each individually, and distinctly different, no matter how much we have in common. He doesn’t take His Master paintbrush and blend us all together into some muted color. He wants us to stand out, as individuals, none of us any better than another.
Some of us are better off than others. But, according to whom?
|(photo from hostasdirect.com)|
I’ve seen poor Christian Southerners made the butt of many jokes. “Why would they believe in a God that’s treated them so badly? Why would they praise a God that can’t even provide a decent roof over their heads?”
Ponder that for a moment. How do you answer those questions?
If you’re one who would mock right along with the others, are you simply praising your Maker for what He’s given you? Do you believe in God because you consider yourself to be well off enough to not complain, even though there are many around you with more wealth and riches than you have?
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God shines more brightly through a poor, toothless grin that’s worn on the face of one who truly loves Him for Who He is, than through the $1000 tithe check dropped in a collection plate by one who gives begrudgingly or out of habit.
Joy and peace come from that place where we honor God for Who He is – not from trying our human best to walk in obedience; joy and peace make us shine!
Do we rejoice in our Creator because of Who He is – or simply for the things He can provide for us?
If we’re celebrating Him for what He gives us, our colors aren’t enhanced or nearly as brilliant as they can be. Like a plant leaf hidden in the shadows, not much white would be needed in a painting of our likeness.
If we’re celebrating Him for Who He is, no earthly artist can capture all our colors.
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If we’re not celebrating Him at all, though we may have a colorful personality (because God created us to be like Him) – any light we exude will too quickly be extinguished like a child’s puff on a tiny candle.
|(photo from dreamstime.com)|
We were made to shine!
I know an artist who would love to paint your portrait. How much white should she bring?