Only when do not Love Darkness Can We Hope to Live in the Light
What does it mean to live in the light? The Apostle John said the wrath of God was coming not just because of sin, but because men ‘loved’ darkness. What does it mean to love darkness?
Live in the light! It means more than reading a Bible and going to Church. It has a lot to do with what I call the ‘optics of ambition’. Let me explain.
Anywhere there is a hierarchy you will find men and women climbing to the top. In such places ‘optics’ are everything! ‘How others perceive me’ is what matters – more than integrity and certainly more than authenticity. Loving the darkness begins with a focus on optics; like what one might expect in the world of politics. Underlying this focus is a belief which says my future and reputation lie in how others perceive me. In this world dodging blame or worse, sullying the name of a competitor, is the name of the game. To play this game one must embrace at least two lies: Conceal who I really am and project someone I am not. To play is to love darkness. In the Kingdom of God this will never be rewarded.
The Gospel of Jesus promises us two dynamics which ought to discourage duplicity. The first is He promises to openly reward only what is done in secret, that is, without the motive of optics. “But when you do a charitable deed, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, that your charitable deed may be in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will Himself reward you openly” (Matthew 6:3-4). At the end of the day, what is born in consideration of the ‘optics of ambition’, will not prosper. To live this way requires a leap of faith which says, ‘my life is not in people’s opinion of me and I will not live to please them’. Live in the light!
The second promise is this: “For there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; neither hid, that shall not be known. Therefore whatever you have spoken in darkness shall be heard in the light; and that which you have spoken in the ear in closets shall be proclaimed on the housetops” (Luke 12:2-3). This means our true intention and actions will also become openly known.
At the heart of Christianity is faith. We live by these promises because ultimately we believe God rewards and promotes. The evidence we believe is reflected in what we do. It is demonstrated in our authenticity and willingness to do our goods deeds in secret. A man who truly believes, knows his future is in God’s hands and does not care what others think about him. On the other hand the man who does not believe God promotes must promote himself or at least look good to those he believes will promote him. Where is your faith?
Authentic ‘Kingdom Living’ is living in the light. It means neither valuing nor trusting political favour which is at best whimsical and fickle. That is say, ‘I will not live catering to the perceptions of others’. Be genuine with others and honest with yourself. There is no escaping, as inevitable disclosure will be upon us all, for good or bad. Live in the Light!