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Illuminating the Dark

If you know me personally or follow me on Instagram, you know how much I like sunrises. I have been known to pull the car over on the side of the road to just sit and enjoy the scene of a rising sun (and maybe snap a picture or two). I choose to take walks at the beginning of the day to enjoy the sky and I'll pull the kids outside to marvel at the beauty with me.

I could go on and on about the incredible design of each new sunrise but what I love most about these scenes is the light. The way it reflects and paints the sky different colors, the way it illuminates the earth and highlights the tops of the trees or fog-covered fields. I love how it exposes things that I would have never noticed without its piercing ability.

My kids recently pointed out my need to have the shades pulled up in our house at the start of the day and our curtains drawn wide open---it's not just the beautiful picture in the sky that I enjoy, it's the light that causes it. I crave for its illuminating reach to enter into our very home.

I'm obsessed with light. Eager to seek it and expose myself to its effects.

At this realization I've had to ask myself a hard I as eager to seek light in all areas of my life?

More specifically...

Am I eager to seek The Light to expose my own darkness?

I love how a sunrise overcomes the darkness of a night, but do I have the same love for how the Son overcomes the darkness of my heart?

Do I delight in the scene within me when Jesus brings light to something in my heart that is hiding in darkness? Do I welcome it, stand in awe, and marvel at the beauty that's there in the exposure?

Or do I close the shades and hide, covering my face to the light that stings my eyes?

The truth is, I am not as eager to let that light shine on the dark places of my soul. When my own sin is exposed it's uncomfortable, it's not exactly beautiful and neither is its display one of awe and wonder to me. It feels ugly, the hues are a shade I don't enjoy and the discomfort makes me feel naked. I struggle to want to run away, covering myself in my own shame and remaining in that darkened place that feels familiar.

There's supposed to be an offensiveness about our sin being uncovered and though it should be unsightly to us, it's not something to run away from. And though it's ugly, there's beauty in it too. Guilt is meant to drive us into repentance, not further into darkness. The problem is, with the exposure of light also comes the noises of the day and the lies of condemnation get louder.

But, at exposure I have to remember..." There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus." (Romans 8:1)

He exposes my sin in love so that I don't stay in the darkness. Though it's uncomfortable, it's beautiful. The condemnation is not from Him, it's from the one who wants to keep me in the dark.

God brings my sin to the light so that I can be met with the full force of His grace, His love, and His mercies that are new every morning. My sin being exposed is His faithful love at work rescuing me from me darkness.

When the sun peeks up from the edge of the earth its bright light stings my eyes because my sight has gotten so accustomed to the dark. But the sting doesn't diminish the beauty of what's happening, the sting helps me remember the power the light has to overcome the darkness.

Yes, it's not fun to see our own sin. Yes, it's uncomfortable and a difficult place to be for a moment. But with that light comes life, transformation, and restoration.

The light, however painful it may feel at exposure, is a gift to receive.

Just like the scene of a beautiful sunrise...just like the gospel of Jesus Christ that illuminates the dark.

He is faithful to continue His work to draw to light the sin in our lives, we must continue to give ourselves to that work and stand in the ambiance of His mercy. Confessing, repenting and walking in the light of His grace.

The sunrise is a beautiful thing to partake in and to welcome, just like the exposure of my sin. I have already been saved by grace through Jesus Christ and the exposure of the darkness in my heart is the reality of the faithful work He is doing in me. Transforming and restoring.

Am I opening the curtains of my heart and inviting the light in? Am I seeking it and welcoming its effects? Will I rise to stand in its ambiance and receive it as a gift? Will I seek the light of the gospel the same way I seek and savor the light of a sunrise?

The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. (Lamentations 3:22-23)


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