I’m an individual that loves to understand what words actually mean, so when I happen upon a new word I’m quick to look it up. (I even get those ‘word of the day’ notifications from Dictionary.com.) I also enjoy looking up words of which I know the general idea or thought, but have never read the ‘actual’ definition. I’ve found over the years that there are many words we use in casual conversation that are in completely wrong context, but I digress.
The point I’m coming to is this – the other day I saw a shadow. Now of course I understand how one is made, and what they are. I’m familiar with expressions like ‘lurking in the shadows’ or ‘hidden in the shadows’ creating mental pictures of an unsafe dark alley with shady characters in it or even ‘beyond a shadow of doubt,’ but I thought “How would you describe or define a ‘shadow’?” So in familiar fashion I looked it up: A shadow is an area where direct light from a light source cannot reach due to obstruction by an object. It occupies all of the space behind an opaque object with light in front of it. IN my vernacular, a shadow is the place where light has not yet reached. The place where light is around, but not in, so dark is still present.
In John 8 Jesus describes Himself as the “light of the world.” He goes on to say: “He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.” (John 8:12 NKJV) and later, “I have come as a light into the world, that whoever believes in Me should not abide in darkness.” (John 12:46 NKJV) Gods design for my life is to be in His marvelous light, Jesus Himself is light, and in Him there is no darkness. Shadow in essence is a place where there is both dark and light – mixture. The scripture says that when I believe upon Him and confess with my mouth I am saved, now a new creation in Christ. I have died to the old and my real life is in Christ. I am no longer in darkness, I am in light!
Many are asking, “Who can show us any good?” Let the light of your face shine upon us, O LORD.
Look on me and answer, O LORD my God. Give light to my eyes, or I will sleep in death. (Psalm 13:3)
You, O LORD, keep my lamp burning; my God turns my darkness into light. (Psalm 18:28)
Wow, I didn’t see that spiritual sucker punch coming. The only way shadows can be in me is if I have put up obstructions to His light, road blocks, if you will, not allowing Him access to every area. You see in Him “there is no variation or shadow of turning.” (James 1:17) If there are any shadows, any shiftings, in me it comes from my road blocks and detour signs. What having I been allowing to block His light? How do I know what the source of obstruction is?
Here is what followed in the paragraph I read about shadows: The cross section of a shadow is a two-dimensional silhouette, or reverse projection of the object blocking the light. A shadow is a distorted view of the object that it reversely projects. I can discover what is blocking the light by looking at the image the shadow leaves. If there is a place of doubt or wavering that comes when someone speaks of healing, I can identify there is an object or road block there. An obstruction being an experience in my past where I didn’t see what I thought I should, placing a block in me which His light exposes. Those places of doubt, questioning, distrust, – past experiences, people, and circumstances, all come from relying on my five senses and a lack of light exposure. I have to intentionally bring everything into the light. The minute I see that shadow of doubt I must remove the obstruction and bring the fulness of the light of Jesus. How do I bring EVERYTHING into the light?
Jesus is more than just the light. In the first chapter of John it begins this way: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” Then just a few verses later: “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen His glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.” (John 1:1, 14 ESV) Jesus is the Word! The Word is full of grace and – truth! Not facts or experiences, but TRUTH. It says in Psalm 119:105 “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” When I expose those shadows of doubt by digging in to the truth of His Word, the light penetrates through and pushes out every variance, every area of darkness that remains, and reveals what is right and true. Walking in the fullness of light. Jesus having full access to every area of me. This is just the beginning, I’m not just suppose to be in light, I’m also to BE A LIGHT.
“You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.” (Matthew 5:14-16 NKJV)
“Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure. Do all things without complaining and disputing, that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast the word of life, so that I may rejoice in the day of Christ that I have not run in vain or labored in vain.” (Philippians 2:12-16 NKJV)
Every ounce of my being must be filled with Light, Word, Jesus – so that I can ‘so shine before men’ that they would glorify my Father.
When something comes your way and brings awareness to an object of obstruction don’t just leave it there. Investigate and expose all areas of darkness, shadows of turning, with the Light of the Word – Jesus.
“Send forth your light and your truth, let them guide me; let them bring me to your holy mountain, to the place where you dwell.” (Psalm 43:3)
“For at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light (for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true), and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord. Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them.” (Ephesians 5:8-11)