My 15 Minutes are my thoughts as I study God’s Word. This year one of my goals is to read through the entire Bible. As I move forward, I will share some of what God is teaching me in this experience
Have you ever experienced a deep, thick, suffocating darkness?
The kind where you’re completely disoriented and can’t see your hand in front of your face. The kind where fear twists its fingers around your throat and starts to squeeze.
Irrational or real, it doesn’t matter, the fear is there, stealing your breath and filling you with a soul-crushing panic.
Then a light pierces the darkness.
“LET THERE BE LIGHT!” (Genesis 1:1-2)
These are God’s first recorded words in all of Scripture. They always send a thrill through me, leaving awe and wonder in their wake. They fill me with gratitude too deep for words to express because they’ve been tattooed on my soul.
The profoundness of these words cannot be overstated or measured because in them resides life. Hope. And our future.
When I was a little girl I was terrified of the dark. Fear, real or irrational, was like a boa constrictor—ensnaring me, making it impossible to get away; crushing me, making difficult to take in a single breath. Even to this day, I’m not a fan of the dark. I no longer have the immobilizing fear I had as a child, but when I’m in unfamiliar surroundings it makes me uneasy. Nervous. Cautious.
When I was in my late 20s I became intimate with another kind of darkness. Depression.
I know the soul-crushing panic that comes when despair closes in on all sides and all hope is lost. Depression clouded my mind and disorientated my thinking. It stole my breath. My joy. My hope. And it almost stole my life. I was terrified I would never see The Light again.
Then God said,
“LET THERE BE LIGHT!”
And there was light.
What astounds me about “LET THERE BE LIGHT!” is, God doesn’t need light.
He provided light for our benefit.
It’s a gift to show us the way. Just like His Word. Just His Son. Just like Salvation.
“Your word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path.” (Psalms 119:105)
When I was at my lowest, in the deepest recesses of The Pit of Depression and Despair, His Word was the only thing that could penetrate and pierce the darkness. Little by little, these points of Light illuminated my surroundings, allowed me to get my bearings, and showed me the way out.
“To you the night shines as bright as day. Darkness and light are the same to you.” (Psalm 139:12b).
See, my Pit wasn’t dark to Him. While I was wrapped up in my despair, encased by suffocating darkness, Jesus had no trouble finding me. He came and sat next to me; gently talked to me until I was ready to open my eyes, look up, take His hand, and follow Him out.
“LET THERE BE LIGHT!”
- How is this possible?
- Where did this light come from?
- What was it’s source?
- What kind of light was it?
After all, the sun, moon, and stars weren’t created until THREE DAYS LATER!
Interestingly, I found the answers to these questions at the end of Revelations. Oh, there are flickers of this Truth all through Scripture, but none quite as pointed, as straight-forward as this:
And the city [The New Jerusalem] has no need of sun or moon, for the glory of God illuminates the city, and the Lamb is its light. (Revelation 21:23)
Can you imagine?! Oh how my heart aches for this!
But, Dear One, this means at creation, God’s glory was there penetrating everything!
God, Himself was the source of The Light! His glory radiated, manifested itself as light.
- BEFORE He gathered the seas and formed the land, animals, birds, plants, and trees—His glory was present.
- Before He created the sun and the moon—His glory shone everywhere.
- Before He named each star and hung it in place—His glory illuminated, left no shadows.
- Before the end of that first day—HIS GLORY WAS THERE reaching out and infusing everything!
Let that rest on you for a minute.
Beloved, before God gathered the dust in His hands to form you and breathe His life-breath into your lungs, that dust was infused with His glory.
This is more than just a light piercing the darkness. This is a floodlight reaching into the farthest darkest corners chasing away the shadows!
When we sinned we lost that glorious light and plunged back into darkness (spiritually speaking)…
…But not for long…
Where is the newborn king of the Jews? We saw his star as it rose, and we have come to worship him. (Matthew 2:2)
Can you see the light? The star piercing the darkest of nights. Guiding. Directing. Leading. Illuminating.
LET THERE BE LIGHT!
The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. (John 1:14)
AND THERE WAS LIGHT!
Jesus spoke to the people once more and said, “I am the light of the world. If you follow me, you won’t have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life.” (John 8:12)
JESUS IS the Light!
The Son [Jesus] is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of His being, sustaining all things by His powerful word. After He had provided purification for sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven. (Hebrews 1:3) And “we are made right with God by placing our faith in Jesus Christ. And this is true for everyone who believes, no matter who we are.” (Romans 3:22)
His Light shines on us!
This is what drew me from The Pit. See, I always believed in Jesus. I accepted Him as my Savior as a child. But this is the moment I BELIEVED GOD. I took Him at His word. This is when I chose to gamble on James 1:17: “He never changes or casts a shifting shadow.” (James 1:17) Everything else in my life had changed. Been turned up-side-down. My very foundations had crumbled and were gone. I had nothing to lose and everything to gain, even though I didn’t know it yet.
And do you know what happened?
The God, who said, “Let there be light in the darkness,” made THIS LIGHT, His Light shine in MY heart, in YOUR heart so YOU AND I could know the glory of God that is seen in the face of Jesus Christ. (2 Corinthians 4:6, my paraphrase). The more I studied His Word, the more it became vibrantly relevant to me. I changed me from the inside out. It rebuilt me and restored me. It chased away the darkness.
I KNOW it can do the same for you.
LET THERE BE LIGHT!
Arise, Jerusalem! Let your light shine for all to see. For the glory of the Lord rises to shine on you. Darkness as black as night covers all the nations of the earth, but the glory of the Lord rises and appears over you. All nations will come to your light; mighty kings will come to see your radiance. Isaiah 60:1-3
Or put another way:
Arise, Follower of Jesus Christ! Let your light shine for all to see. For the glory of the Lord rises to shine on you, in you, and through you. Darkness as black as night covers all those of the earth who are lost, but the glory of the Lord rises and appears over you. These lost ones will come to your light; many will come to hear your testimony and see your radiance and choose to follow Jesus because of it. (my paraphrase)
And there was light.
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