September 19, 2017

Grateful Shining

Ephesians 5:8-20

Always [give] thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

—  Ephesians 5:20

In today’s Scripture verses, Paul urges his readers to live as light in a world of darkness. Believers in Christ can do that by living wisely, trusting that wise, godly behavior will serve as a witness to the living Christ.

Sometimes we mistakenly think that witnessing to our faith means only knocking on doors or traveling to faraway lands to talk about the love of Jesus. In reality, shining the light of Christ’s love can happen in our everyday lives all of the time. It happens when we recognize we are new creations in Christ. Centered in gratitude for what Christ has done for us, we are empowered to love and respect the great variety of people God brings into contact with us.

I remember an incident that hap­pened over 30 years ago in the breakroom at my workplace. Several people had started a conversation about a person who wasn’t there. The assumptions and comments about this person were not kind. One of my colleagues stood up and said, “It’s not right to be talking about our co­worker in this way without her being present to defend herself.” As you can imagine, the room fell silent.

The light of Christ shone into the darkness of that moment as we were reminded how to love and respect our “neighbor.” May we too make the most of every opportunity today to gratefully shine the light of Christ.

Light of the world, may our gratitude for all that you have done for us empower us to shine your light today. In your name we pray. Amen.

About the author — Ruth Boven

Ruth Boven serves as minister of congregational life at LaGrave Ave. CRC in Grand Rapids, Michigan. She and her husband, Greg, have two adult children. They find rich purpose in urban ministry and delight in enjoying the wonders of God's good creation.

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