Shine brighter than city lights

New York City (PC: Jordan Vuong via Flickr)
You’re living in a big city where everyone is aware of what others are doing. You see people doing the same things, falling on the same path, going in the same direction. It’s tempting to follow; it’s tempting to fall under peer pressure. But you can shine brighter than the city lights. You can stand out of the crowd and enlighten others rather than passively walking along.

People are attracted to New York City for its art, culture, talent, opportunity and entertainment. It’s a city where people love to visit but not really live in. And if they want to live in the city it’s to pursue a flashy career.

Most city kids are tough, intelligent, devious, experienced and impressionable. Around 30 percent of New York City kids live in poverty (source Capital New York) and it’s in that environment that can lead to teen pregnancy or school dropouts. Those who are a statistic are looking at the same city lights that remind them that that’s where they “should be,” that it’s expected from them because they’re from the city.

We may think we’re staring at beautiful city lights but we’re looking at false light, at artificial brightness that blurs our vision of the truth of where we can go in life. Instead, we see what others see and not what could be, of how God sees.

His vision and plans are so much brighter than the city lights, or even the light from the sun or moon. His views bring joy and understanding, direction and clarity.

Shine brighter than the city lights, show the truth and inspire.

When we stare at a bright light it blurs our sight, it clouds our vision and makes it hard to see the full picture. We might not realize that what may seem like a bright idea or like the best place to be is really not as glamorous, but really dangerous.

God tells us to walk in the light, to be the light. The light He means is the light of truth and holiness. We are meant to live the truth and a holy and pure life, not in darkness.

The city does not need the sun or moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp.

Then Jesus told them, “You are going to have the light just a little while longer. Walk while you have the light, before darkness overtakes you. Whoever walks in the dark does not know where they are going.

“Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.

Edited April 2021


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