Thursday, November 29, 2012
Light in the Darkness
The evening before Thanksgiving my grandfather passed away. He has always been a vibrant, strong man whose vitality belied his 89 years. A few weeks before his death, he fell ill with pneumonia and while recovering in the hospital, suffered a stroke. Wanting to be near, my parents drove the hundreds of miles that separated them from my grandparents and spent time ministering to their needs. Reluctantly but necessarily, they returned home. While my dad took care of things at home, my mom made arrangements to return to her parents. Two hours after my mother's plane landed and she was at her father's side, he made his way into eternity.
Today, my mom ministers to my grandmother still, crying with her, laughing with her and comforting her. My dad, holding down the fort at home, misses mom terribly. He is anticipating her return and can barely wait until her plane lands to wrap his arms around her.
Being at loose ends, my dad came to visit our family last Sunday evening. All of the children wrestled for a place next to "poompa" (a long story) and each wanted to be involved in making up his bed on the couch. Miss Serenity donated one of her pillows, Princess Dragon Snack pulled out some blankets and Maid Elizabeth, knowing that her grandpa had a nasty cough, located a tiny oil lamp that was designed to heat medicine (we used Vick's) to relieve the symptoms of a cold.
The oil lamp is tiny - about 5 inches overall - with a miniature, frosted chimney. This particular lamp was not designed to provide light, it is much too small, rather it was designed to heat a basin that is filled with medicine, that in turn, is diffused into the room.
As Dad was getting ready for bed, Maid Elizabeth lit the lamp and told her grandpa that he could leave it on all night. Not only would it make the room smell nice, it would act as a simple night-light as well. We said our goodnights, turned off the lights and headed to bed. The little lamp, with its tiny, glowing chimney, proved not to be the least bit intrusive, offering only the tiniest amount of light.
Awake in the middle of the night, I got up to check on my sleeping family. As I walked out of our bedroom, I was greeted by an almost blinding light! Looking around the room to see what light had been left on, my glance fell to that little, tiny oil lamp. The lamp, less than 5" tall, with a chimney 1 1/2" tall, was lighting an entire 30'x30' shouse!
We have been living in an "enlightened" time. The truth of God's word has illuminated our nation and our world. Many of us have allowed our "lights" to grow dim or even go out - who needs our light when there is so much light in the world? But, our world, our nation, our families are growing dark. We have forsaken our God and with that, we have lost our light.
Christians - Children of God - Followers of the Way - the world is growing dark. Fill your lamps with oil, trim the wicks - now is your time. The darker it becomes, the brighter your light will shine - you will become beacons of hope in a dark world. You were made for such a time as this. Let your light so shine that it glorifies your Father in heaven.
As my Grandmother is in the midst of the darkness, my mother lights the way. Likewise, as this world is plunged into darkness, it is now our job to light "The Way".