by: carole l. haines
Ever feel like that, a left-over? Picked last when the neighborhood got up a game of soft-ball, left out of a special party; passed over, cast aside, ever felt that way? Well I sure have, and I was brooding a bit about it this morning. But God gave me a visual that I pray I don’t soon forget, to encourage me deep down to my soul. I love to decorate for Christmas. I pretty much start right before Thanksgiving and little by little things go up, sometimes in heaps, sometimes in trickles. Little touches here and there throughout the house and outside. I had about 7-8 strings of left-over white lights, and they were bugging me. On two of the strings, half the lights were not working, but still, I kept trying to think of a way to use them. Well, I was looking out my kitchen window when I realized that I had no lights on my two Peach Trees, no lights on any trees at all. So, I asked my husband and son if they would be willing to put the last strings on the trees. They trudged out last night and began that labor of love. It was cold, and both of them had a ladder fiasco, so we decided to stop for the night, and finish in the daytime. But even half decorated, I can tell that these trees will be the prettiest decorations in the yard. God whispered to me this morning, “There are no such things as ‘left-over lights’ in my Kingdom, Carole. All my lights are strategically placed to shine on those around them in the darkest places.”
No one is picked last in the Kingdom of God. No one is left out, cast aside, or passed over. That blessed my heart so much, as I was feeling rather cast aside and left-out, both last night and into this morning. God brought this verse to mind for me as well:
14 “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden; 15 nor does anyone light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. 16 Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.” (John 5:14-16 NASB)
I am not a left-over light, and neither are you. God has strategically placed me where I am, so that I can shine His light of love on everyone I come into contact with. Don’t let the enemy whisper that you are of no use. He’s a liar, and just wants you to hide your light under a basket. But God wants our lights to shine on everyone around us, and He placed us right where we are. Maybe you are not picked first, me either. But God is pleased when our lights shine in tiny places before a few, as much as in a great auditorium before many. He has no little lights, no left-over lights. So let your light shine every day, in such a way, that people see it, and come to know God better through you. Merry Christmas.