Looking for 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 (NLT)
It was 6am on November 12, 2014, sitting in my hotel room in South Asia. Back home on the East Coast in the United States, it was 7:30 pm the previous day and my family was finishing up dinner and wrapping up their typical busy day.
Due to busy schedules and multitudes of distractions, we rarely stop to think about what is going on halfway around the world — or halfway across town for that matter. But on November 12, 2016, for me, that was not the case. I was halfway around the world, and I had the privilege of knowing firsthand what was going on.
I knew what many women and children far away from my home were experiencing, how they constantly persevere in very difficult circumstances, and how God’s light shines brightly in their communities and in their lives — despite their daily struggles.
“You light a lamp for me. The Lord, my God, lights up my darkness.”— Psalm 18:28 (NLT)
During my time in South Asia, I met many wonderful godly men, women, and children. But the one thing that stood out in many of the areas I visited, was the high rate of abuse and mistreatment of women and children. As I listened to some of the personal stories, my heart simply broke. Accounts of physical abuse, sexual abuse, and women and children being sold into slavery for barely more than a bottle of alcohol.
At the same time though, I heard stories of encouragement, accounts of how bright God’s light was shining in the lives of many of these same men, women, and children. In places where once there was despair and lack of hope, there is now a presence of God’s light bringing hope and restoration to the hearts and souls of these beautiful people. Men, women, and children being saved and lives being transformed as a result of God’s amazing grace.
Each year, I return to South Asia to visit with many women I’ve met on earlier trips, and I meet new friends and hear new testimonies of lives being changed by our never-changing God. And, what I see repeatedly every time I go, is that God’s light is continually shining brighter than ever before.
Everywhere I turn, I encounter hope in the realization that salvation is attainable and a real relationship with the one true God is available — to those who choose to believe. A few years back, I met a young girl living in the red-light district who had prayed to receive Christ and was learning that she is unconditionally loved, in spite of the profession she is trapped in. I’ve met children who have been rescued from the sex-trafficking trade and are now being raised in a Christian home where hope and healing through God’s love are experienced every day. And, I’ve met many women whose lives and entire families have been transformed as a result of their salvation.
“The Lord is my light and my salvation — so why should I be afraid?” — Psalm 27:1 (NLT)
God is shining His light all around the world! Even right here in our own back yards!
Join me in praying that the darkness of this world will be overcome by God’s light and that multitudes of men, women, and children, who are suffering and desperately in need, will believe and receive God’s message of salvation, hope, and healing.
“Jesus replied, ‘My light will shine for you just a little longer. Walk in the light while you can, so the darkness will not overtake you. Those who walk in the darkness cannot see where they are going.’” — John 12:35 (NLT)
What will you do today to share God’s light with someone living in darkness?
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