I was reading Neil Anderson’s captivating book Victory Over the Darkness this morning, and I was blown away at what the Lord chose to reveal to me. This was the statement that captured me:
Light does not produce life. Life produces light.
It doesn’t seem like that overwhelming at face value. But what I take away from it has the power to be transformational.
It comes from John 1:4,
“In Him was life, and the life was the light of men.”
Eddie Izzard is one of my favorite comedians. In one of his recorded stand-up routines, he calls to attention how terribly bored older (white) people sound when they sing their hymns (“HALLELUJAH” “HALLELUJAH” “HALLELUJAH”). Notice there are no exclamation points there. (Check this clip out; the good stuff is from 42 sec-2 mins, but watch it all if you have the time and are unoffendable) (Disclaimer– he is a transvestite and does, in fact, drop the F bomb once… because he’s British).
You get the picture. It’s so true! I grew up Southern Baptist and we were definitely a people that did not reflect a great amount of joy whilst singing our four-hundred-year-old hymns (although now, I’d almost prefer hymn singing to any new worship tune…not sure what that’s about… ok, moving on!)
The point is that in much of our Christian praise to the Lord, we have no life, no celebration! It does not bring light or life to ourselves or others.
We all have access to the Exhorter gift, whether or not we feel like it. We behave into the feeling, rather than waiting for feelings in order to behave like it. We aren’t meant to live boastfully or from a place of self-conceit or reverence. But we are asked to live like we are brothers and sisters of Christ, sons and daughters of the Most High King.
You don’t see many royals living out of a poverty or martyr mindset.
Even when we are asked to sacrifice something ‘important’ to us, or difficult for us, we are asked to do it joyfully and out of the abundance that is our inheritance.
That’s what we’re living out of as people redeemed in the Lord- inheritance! We are royals, adopted into the Royal Family! That’s almost better than being born into it. You’ve been chosen, and you’ve been given a beautiful heritage.
Your new birthright has become life, and not only that but celebration.
Yes, we are called to deny ourselves. But that, too, doesn’t yank us out of abundance. Deny our fleshly, sinful selves, and claim our heavenly, spiritual, perfect, forgive selves that Christ offers us! This should bring LIFE to us! And real life creates and then reflects LIGHT, and LIGHT pours out into all the earth and brings life to the dark places!
LIFE does not look like poverty. It does not look like an orphan spirit. It does not look like a Hallelujah-Have-To. It looks like joy. It sounds like a gospel choir. It feels like the warmth of the sun on your face after a long week of frigid wintery wind and grey skies. My friend, that brings LIFE.
And life creates light by which others may have life, too.
So live life like you mean it! Live abundantly! Live loud and have wild adventures! Drink in all that you can! Soak up the sensuousness of barefeet on cool grass, a long hug, a sunset over a lake! Let it reflect in you the abundant inheritance that you are living out of!
You are royalty! Start living like it and let your life bring light to those who still need it!