The Drinking Gourd
Read: Philippians 2:12-18
Shine as lights in the world, holding fast the word of life. —Philippians 2:15-16
Prior to the American Civil War (1861–1865), fugitive slaves found freedom by following the Underground Railroad, a term for the secret routes from the South to the North and the abolitionists who helped them along the way. Slaves would travel at night for many miles, keeping on track by following the light of the “Drinking Gourd.” This was a code name for the collection of stars known as the Big Dipper, which points to the North Star. Some believe the fugitives also used encoded directions in the lyrics of the song “Follow the Drinking Gourd” to keep them from getting lost as they traveled.
Both the abolitionists and the “drinking gourd” served as points of light directing the slaves to freedom. The apostle Paul says that believers are to shine as “lights in the world” to show the way to those seeking God’s truth, redemption, and spiritual liberation (Phil. 2:15).
We live in a dark world that desperately needs to see the light of Jesus Christ. Our calling is to shine forth God’s truth so that others can be directed to the One who redeems and is the path to liberty and life. We point the way to Jesus, the One who is the way, the truth, and the life (John 14:6). —Dennis Fisher
Dear Lord, thank You for redeeming me and giving me new life. Give me compassion for those who are still lost in spiritual darkness. Use me to be a light that points others to You, the Light of the world.
Light up your world by reflecting the light of Jesus.
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