Let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven. Matthew 5:16
Thoughtful men and women find people who always talk about themselves and their exploits to be something of an annoyance. Thankfully, the adolescent desire to impress others with stories of our heroic feats tends to fade with time. With age and experience come an understanding that there is virtue in humility and discretion. We become less and less tolerant of prideful boasting in our lives and in the lives of others. We may even grow in faith to the point where we would prefer that the good we do go unnoticed and upraised. There are many people who diligently and daily labor for the glory of God who would be mortified if their efforts were recognized or celebrated by others.
There are, however, times when we need to allow the light of our good works to shine forth for all to see. This is not for our own edification, but for people to see the light of God shining through us and give glory to God for the goodness witnessed. In a speech in 1994, Nelson Mandela famously said, “We are all meant to shine, as children do. We are born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us, it’s in everyone. And as we let our light shine, we unconsciously give others permission to do the same.”
How can you allow your light to shine this week?
Lord, without my either being or appearing overly proud or boastful, help Your light to shine through me as a beacon to those around me. Not my light, but Your light. Shine through me today. In Jesus’ name, I pray. AMEN.