In college, during finals week, I would sit alone in a dimly lit study room while I would study for a week straight with too much caffeine and not enough sleep. I distinctly remember walking out of the library after having been there all night, seeing real sunshine for the first time in… who knows how long — my eyes burned. I would immediately shut my eyes and cover them with my hands. Eventually, I would slowly squint my eyes open, and my eyesight would adjust again.
This is a picture of the Christian experience. Before salvation, when we were void of the Holy Spirit, we could navigate darkness well. Most of the time we did not even know how dark it really was. Then, we experience the bright and morning start, Jesus Christ, and our eyes begin to see all that we had missed in the dark. Life in the light is fulfilling, energizing, and makes us come alive! But then… we are called back into darkness. We are called to be a light there, we are called the brightness of the Holy Spirit in those dark places. “This little light of mine, I’m going to let it shine!” becomes our anthem — but this song no longer has the lightness it did when we sang it as children. As we mature in Christ, we know light, and the darkness of the world becomes heart breaking.
My heart breaks when I see the lies of the enemy play out in the live’s of God’s creation. My spirit aches when I see the children of the Creator experience injustice. Our natural inclination as humans is to close our eyes when facing anything that hurts to see — but this is our calling. To know the goodness of the light, and see the pain in the darkness — and act on it — is our sole mission. II Corinthians 5 speaks so specifically about our purpose; It is “Christ’s love” that “compels us”, in His death and resurrection, that we “should no longer then live for [ourselves] but for Him” and we are “new creation[s]” through Christ who “reconciled us to Himself” so we can carry out the “ministry of reconciliation” to the rest of the world who is lost.
We fight darkness when we bring light. It can feel so complicated, but really Christ made it simple. We are called to be His hands and feet, and we are called to make disciples. Though it is simple, that call can look different for every person. For some, that may be going to feed the homeless on Skid Row, for others it may mean a longterm missions trip in a 3rd world country, or even praying before you eat when you are out on a working-lunch. Press into Jesus through prayer, and see what the Holy Spirit is prompting you to step out into.