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we are the light

A quick stop in Goodwill yesterday landed a burgundy t-shirt in my laundry pile today with the words BE THE LIGHT Matthew 5:14 in bold white letters.

And then the song came on during my run:

"We can hear it every day

There's a call we can't escape

From the closest corners, to the furthest borders

Send us out beyond the walls

To illuminate the ones in the back street alleys

In the hopeless valleys

We'll bring the truth

Time to move against the grain

We will run and not grow faint

Cause the hour is heavy and the fields are ready

Filled with power forged in faith

As the heavens start to break

Let the darkness scatter and strongholds shatter

Love is the answer we take

To the darkest places into the shadows

Into the heart of the battle

We don't have to fear the night

Cause we are the light

We are the light

We carry the fire into the cold

To the ends of the earth we'll go

Together take on the night

Cause we are the light

We are the light"

-Unspoken, We are the Light

Yesterday my run finished with "Carry Your Candle":

There is a candle in every soul

Some brightly burning, some dark and cold

There is a Spirit who brings fire

Ignites a candle and makes His home

Frustrated brother, see how he’s tried to

Light his own candle some other way

See now your sister, she’s been robbed and lied to

Still holds a candle without a flame

We are a family whose hearts are blazing

So let’s raise our candles and light up the sky

Praying to our Father, in the name of Jesus

Make us a beacon in darkest times

Carry your candle, run to the darkness

Seek out the helpless, deceived and poor

Hold out your candle for all to see it

Take your candle, and go light your world

-Chris Rice

And it was just all the reminders I needed that even though it's dark out there -- culturally, politically -- we do not need to fear the dark because we have the Light. And because we have the Light, we are called to BE THE LIGHT... to carry the candle into the darkness, to light the candles of the hurting, to bring the Truth to the valleys and the Light to the shadows.

It's February in Illinois, so we are really aware of the impact of light. Light comes pouring into our house in different places at different times of day and everywhere it goes, it brings me warmth, peace, and joy. You cannot be in the presence of glowy light and not be amazed at what it does to its surroundings. And that's our calling as Believers. We're not called to become what's around us, to plateau at the status quo. We're called to change what's around us - bring the Truth, change the culture, share the hope. Light overcomes darkness. A city on a hill cannot be hid. We are the city.

Verses about light from our candle-pouring event last fall:

John 1:5

I John 1:7

John 8:12

Psalm 119:105

I John 1:5

Psalm 27:1

Genesis 1:4

Ephesians 5:8-9

John 1:9

II Corinthians 4:6

Ephesians 5:13-14

Psalm 36:9

Matthew 4:16

Micah 7:8

Proverbs 6:23

Luke 1:79

Psalm 18:28

John 9:5

Matthew 5:14

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Hi, I'm Hannah.

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