When I was a little boy, my mother had two kerosene oil lamps on the mantle which were really quite nice looking. The globes were simple in design, but the bases had some beautiful artwork engraved into it. Most of the time, these lamps sat on the mantle for decoration only. However, every once in a while, when the power would go out, momma would light these lamps. They were amazingly bright and very cozy on a cold winter’s night!
There was one occasion when momma lit the lamps which I remember vividly! For some reason she forgot to trim the wick in one of them quickly enough and the smoke darkened the globe with soot. It did not take very long for this to happen, but it left an image in my mind I won’t soon forget. You see, the soot had done its damage! Though there was light inside the globe, it did not reach out to its full potential because the glass was dirty. We did not enjoy the beautiful flickering light like we could have.
“Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” Matthew 5:14-16 (KJV)
Every child of God, according to Jesus, is a light. He stated this in Matthew 5:14-16 and further mentioned that we needed to let our light shine in such a way that our good works would glorify our Heavenly Father. As a result of our obedience to God, our light would be a help to folks around us.
Our light will not be effective and reach its fullest potential if our lives are not pleasing to God. If we refuse to keep our sins confessed and live for ourselves instead of God, then we will be like that dirty globe my mother had to deal with. It was only when she cleaned the globe that it was able to be a blessing to those in the room that evening.
How bright is your light? Though we will never know just how effectively God is using us and every time He is using our light and testimony, we still need to shine brightly! Stay out of God’s way and let Him work through you dear saint of God. Allow Him to have His rightful place and you will stand amazed as to how God can use you. Keep your lamps trimmed and burning brightly!