“This is the crisis we’re in: God-light streamed into the world, but men and women everywhere ran for the darkness. They went for the darkness because they were not really interested in pleasing God. Everyone who makes a practice of doing evil, addicted to denial and illusion, hates God-light and won’t come near it, fearing a painful exposure. But anyone working and living in truth and reality welcomes God-light so the work can be seen for the God-work it is.” (John 3:20-21)
I have to say there are a lot of 'dark places' where people can find their 'hideout' within these days. The unfortunate reality is that although they think they are hidden from the light, light has a way of dispelling ALL darkness. It may not seem like it, but there are 'runners' in this world - those who do their very best to live independently and without thought as to their eternal future. To those who run I have one thought today - what is it you are really running from? Is it that you fear trusting anyone other than yourself because someone has violated your trust so badly you have declared you will never trust again? Is it that you fear having to 'give up' the things you love to pursue if you become a 'follower' of Christ? Admittedly you will 'give up' some things as you become a follower, but if you will indulge me on this one - the things you 'give up' are nothing compared to what you 'get' in return!
The reason so many choose to live independent of God is because they want to 'live their own way'. I have had a look around at our world today and I am the first to admit - I don't think that plan is working too well for a very large percentage of people! Independent choice is something God gives each and everyone of us. Why? He doesn't want puppets, he wants participants. Individuals who are made up of thousands of unique personalities, all coming together to seek the light. If that doesn't paint a picture for you this morning, let me elaborate a little. When ten people are in a room, seated in different places throughout the room, all the lighting being on, do they see things differently at all in that lighted room? Of course they do because each has a slightly different vantage point from which they are taking in the room. So it is when we come into this relationship with Christ - we don't all become clones of each other.
God allows us to retain our unique personalities so that we will help each other see his tremendous world from various vantage points. Living in the light doesn't mean we all have to see things identically - we just need to realize light exposes truth and exposes untruth. We don't need to argue over the fine points of 'religion' - because Jesus never called Catholics, Methodists, Protestants, or Jews - he called believers. He called hurting, messed up, and even sick people - into the light so the light could expose and heal. Light isn't to be feared - it is to be felt and embraced - for light doesn't expose to bring harm, but create health once again. Just sayin!