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Monday, September 6, 2010

When the Lights go Out

The cool thing about my college courses is that every week the professors post devotional thoughts and prayers for us to read before we dive into the grueling homework assignments. Today my systematic theology professor posted a devotional about Ps. 119:105, "Your word is a lamp for my feet and light for my path." I've heard that verse my entire life. Like my professor, I remember quoting that verse at VBS and even singing the song. Today however I came to a new depth of understanding of that verse. It was like reading it for the very first time.

My professor talked about needing a light at night in the woods as an illustration of the verse. It reminded me of the stories my dad tells of coon hunting at night with a lantern when he was a kid. While I missed out on all that fun, I have been in the woods many times at night. It is a great thing to have a flashlight, and a very scary turn of events if that light burns out. A tiny light can make the difference in finding your way safely through the woods back home or getting lost and confused in the gloomy darkness.

Then I thought about just how dark it was the other night when I came home after a storm and the electricity was out on the entire block. The stars were covered by clouds and there wasn't a streetlight as far as I could see. It was extraordinarily challenging to just find my way from my car into the house. I ran smack into the glass door. Once I got in, Shawn had a few candles lit for me. As tiny as the flickering flames were, it was still a huge difference from complete blackness.

But I had a new thought tonight. I never know when the electricity might go out, so I keep a stock of candles and matches in a cabinet in our laundry room. In life, I never know when I may find myself in a place of great darkness and need to find my way out. If I am in advance familiar with God's word, then I have my candle with me, ready to be lit so that I can see. However, there is a much greater opportunity for me to get off the path if I am caught off guard and forget that light is the greatest weapon against the darkness.

God's word is a lamp for my feet and a light for my path. Every moment in my life can be illuminated by God's word. Measuring my thoughts and actions against God's standards in his word can help me to find the right path and keep me from falling off into darkness. I realized that studying the Bible, meditating and memorizing scripture during the good moments in life is very important so that I will have the tools that I will need when the lights go out. I need to work harder at being consistent with spending time daily in God's word and memorizing scripture.

When I was in the MRI tube for the 3rd time the other day, I decided that I would go over all the scripture that I knew to pass the time. It was an embarrassingly short list. I became aware of just how little I remember. So that's definitely something I need to work on!

1 comment:

cou67ntry said...

I read your comments both here and on face book. Your writing has become better over time. Note of interest, the old coal oil lantern only lit the way for the person carrying it. those who came behind were blinded. We could only use our flash lights to look for the coon when the dog treed. Had to save battery power. There is an application here some where