When thinking about yourself as someone who wants to be a shining light who bring others to Christ, and show them where they can be safe in a crazy, fallen world, are you a good lighthouse keeper, formerly known as a "wickie,"the person who used to trim the wicks on lanterns in the early days of lighthouses?
The Lighthouse Directory notes there are more than 18,600 lighthouses worldwide. So it seems fitting that we use lighthouses as a metaphor for being a light to lead people to Christ, or to a safe place in a chaotic, fallen world. However, the emphasis is usually on the light, not the structure that houses it.
The bright light that shoots across the sky from lighthouses, to keep ships from wrecking on island dangerous coastlines, hazardous shoals, reefs, rocks, and mark safe entries to harbors, would be useless without the structure housing it. The lighthouse keeper not only had to keep that light bright and continuously shining, he or she had to maintain the lighthouse structure, inside and out.
Taking Care of Your Lighthouse
You may be a shining example of what it means to be a Christian, a living message God wants the world to see and experiences, but if you don't take care of your mental, emotional, and physical health, you're like the lighthouse keeper who lets the lighthouse building and its mechanisms decay to the point where it collapses and disappears into the rocks on which it stood for decades.
Scripture is clear. We are required to take care of our "temples," our physical bodies that house our mental and emotional mechanisms, for that's where the sources of our light, Jesus and the Holy Spirit, beam outward to those we meet and the world around us.
In 1 Corinthians 6:19-20, we read, "Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies." Yes, our "temple," our lighthouse, is an expensive piece of equipment, considering its price that was paid in full.
Actions Often Shine Louder than Words
How we carry ourselves is also a message beaming out to others, some of whom are heading towards the dangerous coastlines, hazardous shoals, and threatening rocks of life with temptations, distractions, and addictions. We often forget that how we act is just as important as what we say. Actions do shine louder than our words, especially a smile that can light up a room.
As Paul writes in Titus 2:6-8, "Similarly, encourage the young men to be self-controlled. In everything set them an example by doing what is good. In your teaching show integrity, seriousness and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned, so that those who oppose you may be ashamed because they have nothing bad to say about us."
Care of our soul and our spiritual life is eternally important. Keeping it clean and shiny helps our Christian light shine bright amidst the darkness that surrounds us. But remember, lighthouse "wickies" not only had to keep that light bright and continuously shining. They also had to maintain the lighthouse structure, inside and out.
In God's Words
"Then your light will break forth like the dawn, and your healing will quickly appear;
then your righteousness will go before you, and the glory of the Lord will be your rear guard." (Isaiah 56:8)
"But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin." (1 John 1:7)
Also read: Luke 11:34, John 13:15, 1 Peter 2:12
In Your Words
How good are you at taking care of your lighthouse, your "temple?" Would you rate yourself good, fair, or poor? How do you feel about your answer?
Are you able to call yourself a shining example of what it means to be a Christian, a living message God wants the world to see and experience? If no, what do you need to change?
What do you do to maintain the light within you? How much do you rely on Jesus, the light of the world, and the Holy Spirit to keep your spiritual light bright and beaming?
In the Words of Others
"A good example is far better than a good precept." Dwight L. Moody
"If God has given you the world's goods in abundance, it is to help you gain those of Heaven and to be a good example of sound teaching to your sons, servants, and relatives." St. Ignatius
"A smile is the light in your window that tells others that there is a caring, sharing person inside." Denis Waitley