When you compare your life to the span of eternity it can seem inconsequential. Maybe that’s why David asked the Lord why He was mindful of man, why He considered man at all. (Psalm 8:4) When I think about the span of eternity my life is barely even a noticeable dot in its never ending existence. But yet, as I ponder on this thought I am reminded of Jesus’ words in Matthew 5. I have been thinking about these words quite a bit these past few days, and have wondered, in the scope and span of eternity, where do I fit in? Sometimes it feels like all I do is exist from one day to another. I work, I pray, I go to church, I eat, I sleep, I watch TV and get up the next day and do it all over again. I go from one day to another not really seeing an impact for Christ in any area of my life. I am not seeing any “kingdom building” coming from my office upstairs. Today I do this and tomorrow I do the exact same thing. Where is the purpose and the point in all that?
“You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to the whole house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” Matthew 5:14-16 ESV
Jesus calls us the light of the world, a city set on a hill that cannot be hidden. In the Old Testament God commanded the children of Israel to make cities of refuge. These cities were to be places that the people of Israel, a stranger or a sojourner could flee to if they ever found themselves in trouble. (Numbers 35:15) When Jesus spoke these words to the disciples about being a city set on a hill, some scholars believe He was standing very near one of these cities. The disciples would have known the reference, and they would have understood what Jesus was saying. These cities could be easily found at any time of day or night because, first of all, they would be elevated above the other cities around them and secondly, they were usually lit at all times. No matter how dark it was, you could see the lights of the cities of refuge and you could safely run to them.
Sometimes, I get tired of always being the problem solver, always being the one people run to when they need something, very rarely do I ever get thanked for the help that I have given. But, as lights, as cities set on hills, it’s not about us getting thanked. If you are being that person that people call for prayer, for help and support, then rejoice. Because that means you are being that light, that city set on a hill and those who need the light of Jesus see it in you and they run towards it. Don’t give up, keep shining. These cities that God told the people to build were also a symbol of Jesus Christ. We are sinners and we run towards His light and His refuge from our sins. We are to be these cities for the lost out there, we are to be clearly seen so that when they see the darkness they are in, they will know where to flee.
People need to see Jesus in us. The whole purpose of our lives is to always be pointing people to Jesus. We should be glitter on the big table of life. When someone looks at the table before them, they should see us sparkling under the rays of the Son of God who brought you safe into the refuge from sin and death. If you were lost in the black of night and had no light at all, what would you look for? You would look for a house, a town or anything that had light. Would you run away from that light? No, you would run towards it. People need to see Jesus. We may not know who is in the darkness and looking for the light, but God doesn’t tell us to choose who we shine for. He tells us to clearly be seen. Be seen as a light, always pointing to the City on a Hill, to the One who has given us all a place of refuge from the sin and death that follows at our heels. Be that light, do not let your life be hidden on the table of eternity. Let the light of Jesus Christ shine upon you and sparkle.
You may be wondering, like me, what makes our lives so grand, so special in the span of eternity. Jesus reminds us of His truth today and gives us encouragement even though eternity looks endless, there are times when His light will hit ours and we will sparkle. Every day we have an opportunity to shine for Jesus, in our words, in our deeds, in our actions and in our homes. God has given us jobs, homes and a life every day not so we can live it for ourselves, but so that we can be glitter on His table of eternity. Every day you have an opportunity to be the city that someone else needs. Every day we have the opportunity to be that person that points our friend, co-worker, grocery store clerk to Jesus Christ. Shine, not so others can see you, but so that they can find Jesus Christ, the true City set on a Hill. In the breadth of eternity your life may not seem much at all, but in the eyes of our Lord, He sees you sparkle. So sparkle right where you are. Amen?