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Shine on

For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light... Ephesians 5.8

Anyone who imagines that we live in a perfect society need only tune into the media - either for a soundbite of news or a blast of popular culture - to be disabused of the notion. There are uplifting stories, as there are flashes of brilliance, but you have to hunt for them. Depravity and dysfunction, meanwhile are in one's face! Some would argue that the presenting issues are only the tip of the iceberg. Underneath lurk even uglier - and far larger - problems.

Fighting for justice can be so exhausting that giving in and going with the flow feels like an increasingly attractive alternative. Yet Christians do not have that option. It is not just that Jesus has saved us personally from judgment. He has called us to be agents of light. That is to say we are to expose the deeds of darkness - whether they be open or hidden - not on account of our own virtue but as we reflect his own and not in our own strength but in the power of the Holy Spirit.

Oh but we lack the resources, we complain. We face organisations and institutions that operate on a different level, at a different scale. Remember David, who approached Goliath unarmed and ill-equipped? Or Jesus, who faced the authority of Rome and the rejection of his own people - on a cross! Apocalyptic literature, which abounds in the Bible, reveals that things are not what they seem and that can help us to appreciate the bigger picture and our part in it.



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