Midweek Push

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

ARE YOU AFRAID OF THE DARK?

This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.” (1 John 1:5-7)

As a child, I was a scaredy cat.

I was told that I would run if a paper bag was blowing towards me thinking I would be caught; I whined when the water went out in the tub, because I thought I would go down the drain; I looked away from cracked doors for fear of what could be looking through the crack back at me. Checking the closets and under the bed were a common theme growing up.

I was afraid of the dark. To terrorize me, my brothers knew to leave me in a room and turn out the lights. Naively, I would sit in that dark room crying and yelling for them to open the door and turn the lights back on. I would scream to be let out; and when they finally opened the door or turned on the light, I would punch them, or not speak to them at all. Why? Because I was so afraid of the dark and feared being left alone.

As I got older I realized that I had the control. I didn’t have to fear the dark because the light was inside—with me. So whenever they would run out the room and turn off the light, all I had to do was move through the room to the light and flick the switch. In the dark: I couldn’t see, I was alone, I felt out of control, and I didn’t know what to do. Walking towards the light I felt lost. But once I figured out the light was on my side, I no longer feared being in the dark.

As light as it may seem when you go outside, the world is a dark place. To maneuver in its dimness you must let the light inside of you shine through. Matthew 5:14-16 puts it like this, “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.” As soon as you let Christ shine through you and into the world, the darkness disappears. It’s not magic, it’s ministry.

You can control the darkness by being the light. As a young girl, I realized that I would have to walk to the light switch to brighten up the room. Sometimes it only takes one step to bring light to someone’s dark world. Because we fear the walk in the dark (evangelizing in the world) we find ourselves either crying about not being able to say the right thing or yelling that it’s too much work to do, that nothing changes; hence the world stays dark. In Christ, we have an advantage in the world. Proverbs 4:18 reminds us that our every step will light the way: “But the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day.”

Darkness does not affect darkness. That’s why when you see one person in sin, usually they are surrounded with others that accept the wrongdoings or are engaging in the same sins. Only when the light (the good) comes into the picture is darkness challenged. Many times when people expose us to darkness we immediately get upset or retaliate, mimicking the darkness, (for instance, me punching or ignoring my brothers). Ephesians 5:8 says, “we were sometimes darkness,” but we must remember that being in Christ has made us “light in the Lord,” so instead of reacting to the darkness, flick the switch and “walk as children of the Light!”

When you see a bag blowing in the wind (the many different beliefs about God swarming), just tell yourself: I’m not afraid of the dark.

When you see water going down the drain (your Christian influence being mocked), just tell yourself: I’m not afraid of the dark.

When you see a door that is partially cracked (a soul that was almost persuaded to become a Christian), just tell yourself: I’m not afraid of the dark.

You don’t have to fear the dark world anymore (2 Timothy 1:7). A child of God has Christ in them (John 1:9), and He calms us, leads us, and brings light through us to this dark place we live in. So flick the switch in your life and walk into the darkness with confidence. The LIGHT IS ON your side—it’s in you!


Melanie Joyce Johnson


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8 comments

  1. Melanie, honestly, this message was ON point!!! Thank you thank you thank you for being obedient to the Spirit and WALKING IN YOUR GIFT!!! Through the good, the bad, and the ugly, I have seen you keep pressing toward the mark! You truly are a light to this dark world and a life to my life! Keep putting God first as I see you do every single day! I can't get the quote from Home Alone 1 out of my head "I'm Not Afraid anymore, You hear me, I'm not afraid!"

    Shanita

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  2. I can so relate. Thanks for sharing.

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  3. Melanie, I will be honest, this is not always easy for me to do. I am very shy and I like being behind the scenes. I have difficulty holding conversations with people because I am extremely to myself. This message gave me encouragement to be able to shine verbally. It will take work so I ask for your prayers and from the sisters of this ministry. I like the challenges and inspiration from this message and ministry.

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  4. Thank you so much Shanita for those kind words.... It is so encouraging to know that God blessed you this morning through this Push! Thank you for continuing to work with SWAP and using your talents and gifts just as well. We are in this together, and you're right....We're NOT AFRAID ANYMORE!!!

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  5. Reka, it's great to know that we're not alone in this Christian journey and that we all have similar stories that we can share with one another. It is our prayer that you continue to share with others how SWAP Ministries has blessed your life so we can grow together!

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  6. Thank you for your honesty Kathy. Isn't it refreshing to even get fears like this off of our chests?? I (Melanie) can personally relate to you. I am a shy individual, but that is why God blesses us with different gifts to reach people. A speaker will use stage presence, a writer will use words, an artist will use pictures, etc. Find that place within you that makes you comfortable and let God use you.

    As long as you know that the LIGHT (CHRIST) is in you, the darkness is not so bad. We are definitely praying that God gives you what you need to speak confidently to others about Jesus. Keep us informed of how it works out for you! Be blessed!

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  7. From dark into marvelous light. Amen!!!

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  8. YES! YES Veronica! Thankful that God has brought us through the darkness!

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