Why should I let my light shine?

cartoon of two men. One says, I would like to let my light shine, But I'm afraid I would be accused of arson.
This cartoon appeared in the January, 2015 CHOG News e-newsletter


Thanks to Jesus words in Matthew 5:16, Christians love to go around talking about letting our lights shine. As an introvert, that verse has sounded like a threat to me instead of a dose of encouragement. If I let my light shine, do I reveal something I may later regret? Will I look like a fool because what I shone light on was a nice, little skeleton in someone’s closet?

Then again, whenever I listen to the news and hear the latest doom and gloom about the latest crime, terrorist attack or miscellaneous dirty deed, I realize the world could use a little more brightening.

Should I let my light shine? What’s the alternative? Do I sit around and watch the world get darker and scarier? Or do I do something good with what I have? Should I be concerned someone will take my good deeds and turn them into something horrible like arson?

Dr. Martin Luther King went endured abuse and lost his life in the name of civil rights. If we do good, can we expect abuse? Yes, people who go against the status quo and reveal darkness can expect pushback. But light and love must prevail.

On this Martin Luther King day, I am reminded of one of his quotes:

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”

Martin Luther King, Jr. at brainyquote.com

Should I let my light shine? Yes, I’ll do the best I can. It’s the only way to drive out the darkness.

Cartoon: Angry Old Birds

Cartoon of a boy and grandfather watching TV

Cartoon of a boy watching television with his grandfather. The boy says, “I bet you would be a happier person if you watched more cartoons.”

I’m a news junkie, but I have to watch myself. If I’m not too careful, I can get a bad attitude quickly. Let’s face it, TV news loves to find all the “Man bites dog” stories. When things get bad, I have to find a channel with some animated cartoons, and fast!

Student of Doom

Cartoon of a boy and a teacher. The student says, "I think you are giving me bad grades merely because I am a prophet of doom."
Cartoon of a boy and a teacher. The student says, “I think you are giving me bad grades merely because I am a prophet of doom.”