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What does it mean to shine?

A devotion on sharing the light of Jesus

In John 1:9, Jesus is called “the true light, which gives light to everyone.” John asserts Jesus is the true light. The true light that darkness cannot overcome was coming in flesh and blood. The true light that would point all mankind to the life as God knows it was appearing in person. As followers of Jesus, we’re called to be lights in the darkness. So, what does it mean to shine? 
It means:

  1. Being countercultural. We live in a dark world full of lies, hate and confusion. But God’s Word tells us to, “cast off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light” (Romans 13:12). While many are chasing after pleasures and selfish gain, we’re told to live differently; to “put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires” (Romans 13:14).
  2. Putting yourself out there. Jesus said, “Let your light shine before others” (Matthew 5:16). He says that no one lights a lamp just to hide it under a basket. A lamp is meant to be placed on a stand to give light to all around it. You’re to be a light to those around you, which is only possible if you’re taking time to interact with people and cultivate relationships. 
  3. Always pointing back to the source. Jesus said, “Let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven” (Matthew 5:16). Our goal should be to bring glory to God, not ourselves. It’s a matter of the heart.                                  

To shine for God means to walk in his goodness and grace, and to shine to others, showing all you encounter through God’s bright light of hope and everlasting life. These verses and this visual is why Buckner’s tagline, “Hope shines here®,” is the perfect example of our calling to be the hands and feet of Christ. 

Written by Linda Womack, director of Buckner Family Pathways® in Longview, Texas.

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