I wondered if I would be able to tie this post into my study of light and then I came upon this scripture.
For God, who said, “Let there be light in the darkness,” has made this light shine in our hearts so we could know the glory of God that is seen in the face of Jesus Christ. We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves. We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed. Through suffering, our bodies continue to share in the death of Jesus so that the life of Jesus may also be seen in our bodies.
2 Corinthians 4:6-10 – NLT
How does light and suffering share the same space? When troubles come I often question, what did I do wrong? Why am I not being blessed?
We had planned a much-needed dream vacation to Hawaii when the week before, my husband comes down with a horrendous cold just after recovering from one that had lasted the whole month of January. I thought surely since I had skipped the whole flu, cold, pneumonia wave that had hit my family over the holidays, I would avoid this one too. Unfortunately, no. The day before we left, I came down with the worst cold I have had in years.
I’m thinking, that’s okay, I can handle this. This won’t keep me from enjoying my vacation! But with both of us having colds, the challenges of travel seemed nearly overwhelming! The long cramped flight, the long line at the car rental, the discovery of an unneeded upsell for insurance, the disappointment of our hotel rooms ”ocean view”, and the trip to urgent care to treat my husband’s pink eye. All these tried to steal my joy!
I believe that’s why the Apostle Paul shared this scripture. Even though he’s talking about persecution, and I am not suffering persecution, he is telling us what troubles we face will not crush us because the light of Christ lives in us, in these fragile jars of clay.
So I remind myself, and my husband reminds me, we are in Hawaii! The weather is beautiful and warm, the food is delicious, and we have precious time together. So I may be tired and I still have a cold, but I have medicine and time to rest, relax, and enjoy. When I look to Jesus, he shines his light on my many blessings and the troubles fade to the background.