Shine Brightly

26 Jan

Jesus said to his disciples,
“Is a lamp brought in to be placed under a bushel basket
or under a bed,
and not to be placed on a lampstand?
For there is nothing hidden except to be made visible;
nothing is secret except to come to light.
Anyone who has ears to hear ought to hear.”  (Mk 4:21-23)

I would like to say that, all in all, I was a very good student throughout my life.  However, it did not begin that way.  Like most everyone else, when a child first goes to school, that child has to “learn the ropes”.  A person needs to know the classroom rooms and the school rules.  A person has to decide to abide by the rules.

Once the rules were established, each teacher needed to be discerned.  Every teacher presents the material differently.  Some are more animated.  Some are stiff, starched, and boring.

One of the things that I learned at a very early age was to pay attention to teachers when they said, “You are going to want to remember this” or “This is going to be on the quiz (or test)”.  That was a version of “Anyone who has ears to hear ought to hear.”

Jesus is not saying what He said in today’s Gospel for His own good.  Jesus was telling His people to “listen up” for their good.  And what, after all, was Jesus saying?  He was reminding the people that they are to be bright lights in this world of darkness and sin.  They are to be people who, by their very words and deeds, challenge others to “listen up”.

Some people do not want to use their talents and shine brightly in our world because they are afraid or embarrassed.  They are afraid that they may be confronted, challenged, or even harmed if they live their faith to the fullest.  They are embarrassed that they will fall flat on their face and be ridiculed by others if they live the faith.

That is true.  All of that may, indeed, happen.  However, what happens to us here on earth should not matter.  What happens to us eternally is what it is all about.  We may fall flat on our faces but God will never laugh at us.  He will bless us for trying.

FAITH ACTION:  God gave you many talents so that you may shine bright in our world.  Utilize your talents to the best of your ability today