For at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light (for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true), and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord. Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them. For it is shameful even to speak of the things that they do in secret. But when anything is exposed by the light, it becomes visible, for anything that becomes visible is light. Therefore it says, “Awake, O sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.” Ephesians 5:8-14
Believers in Jesus are to be different from the world. We are to walk as “children of the light,” that is, as those who can see what is good and right and true. We are to be discerning what is pleasing to the Lord.
What does this mean? We have a tendency to think that if we “expose” sinful actions by talking about them and criticizing them, that then we are obeying God’s word here. Paul does say to “expose them,” right?
But the apostle’s main point is that we are to avoid the same sins. We are not to take part in them. Instead, we are to live as children of light, and it is the light which exposes things in darkness.
And what light are we talking about? We’re talking about Christ himself, who shines on us.
Unfortunately, it is much easier to criticize others, and then to live just as if we were in darkness ourselves. We proudly avoid one sin, but fall for another. We decry homosexual marriage, but we do not show the light of God’s grace in our marriages. We decry greed in the rich, but we fail to act with generosity with our own wealth. We lament laziness of some who refuse to work, but we seek more and more leisure time for ourselves rather than time to serve.
We are called to discern what is pleasing to God. Invest any time asking that question and you will see places to change your own life.
Living in the light may involve work – but living in the light is a joy and blessing.
Prayer: Dear Jesus, you healed the blind man. Help me know my own blindness, and find the Light in you. Amen.