The imagery of light and darkness is used throughout Scripture as a metaphor for freedom and sin, and God and that which is without God. Jesus consistently refers to himself as the light. In reference to Jesus, Matthew 4:16 says, “The people dwelling in darkness have seen a great light, and for those dwelling in the region and shadow of death, on them a light has dawned.” Scripture also refers to us as the light in Ephesians 5:8 saying, “For at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord.” And in John 3:19-21, Jesus describes a freedom that comes from bringing ourselves to the light:
And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil. For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed. But whoever does what is true comes to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God.
One of the worst effects of sin is the shame it brings that causes us to hide from God and others. Adam and Eve hid from God because of the shame of the first sin. And still today, even though Christ has paid the price for every sin we could ever commit, we hide ourselves from God.
God longs for us to run to him when we make a mistake. He’s the father in the prodigal son story whose arms are eternally extended to us no matter what we’ve done. He longs to embrace us, restore us, and free us in his eternal embrace. He longs for us to step out of our shame, bring ourselves fully into his light, and be delivered from the destructive effects of our sin.
In Isaiah 42:16 God says, “I will lead the blind in a way that they do not know, in paths that they have not known I will guide them. I will turn the darkness before them into light, the rough places into level ground. These are the things I do, and I do not forsake them.” Nothing you could do could cause your God to forsake you. He’s not surprised by your sin. He knows you are dust. But he longs to embrace you in your weakness. He longs to free you from the power of darkness. You don’t have to hide from him. You can come before your God honestly and live as a child of the light (Ephesians 5:8). You can experience true freedom as your sin is forgiven and times of refreshing come (Acts 3:19-20).
Take time as you enter into guided prayer to bring that which has caused you shame into the light. May you find freedom today as God reveals to you the power of his forgiveness and grace.
today’s devotional is written by Craig Denison
1. Reflect on what Scripture says about light and darkness. Allow God’s word to stir up your desire to bring yourself fully to the light.
“For at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord.” Ephesians 5:8
“And I will lead the blind in a way that they do not know, in paths that they have not known I will guide them. I will turn the darkness before them into light, the rough places into level ground. These are the things I do, and I do not forsake them.” Isaiah 42:16
2. What do you need to bring to the light? What is causing you shame?
3. Bring yourself to the light. Ask God how he feels about that which is causing you shame. Take time to receive his forgiveness and grace and rest in his love.