Day 8

Jan 11

Ephesians 5:8-20

For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth) and find out what pleases the Lord. Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them. It is shameful even to mention what the disobedient do in secret. But everything exposed by the light becomes visible—and everything that is illuminated becomes a light. This is why it is said: “Wake up, sleeper, rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.” Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is. Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, 20 always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

You were not simply in darkness and are now in light. You were darkness and are now light. You have undergone a change in your being. You were dark, now you are light. But living in the now, but not yet of God’s Kingdom, we must still choose to live as light. The good news is, God promises to guide us.  The contrast of dark and light used in this passage is meant to show how the sin, pain, and insecurity we so often keep hidden, is the darkness of our lives.  But as we honestly confess our darkness and allow it to be exposed in the light, God can begin to redeem us and sow good fruit in our lives. God is a gentleman and He won’t go where He hasn’t been invited.  But the more we let Him in (often through our vulnerability in the community of believers), the more healing and freedom in Him we will find. Verse 14 is likely a Christian church hymn and declares that when we come to Jesus, we go from death to life.  And if we heed His call to wake up and step into the light, we will be saved; not only from eternal death but from our sin and shame today!

So, what does it mean to live as light? First, it doesn’t happen by accident or default. Paul says, “Be very careful,” or in other words, live wisely as you intentionally seek after God.  God offers freedom in Him so that we no longer have to live in slavery to the darkness of this world.  In order to understand His will, God offers us the opportunity to be filled with His Spirit.  Paul compares being filled with God’s Spirit to the experience of being drunk on wine. When you are drunk, you are under the control of that substance as it takes over your mind and body.  But as we open ourselves to the filling of His Spirit, fully surrendering ourselves to His control over our mind and body, we begin to overflow with joy and thankfulness in His presence.  As other believers experience this same filling of the Spirit, it begins to shape our interactions with one another in how we speak and make music from our hearts to the Lord.  Ultimately, this filling leads to God’s Spirit working through us for His grander purposes; the expansion of His Kingdom in the hearts and lives of others who don’t yet know Him.  

Prayer Points

  1. Take time in silence to listen for the Holy Spirit’s voice and guidance in response to the Scripture and Dave’s reflection above. 
  2. Pray that God will give the people in our church (including yourself) the courage and humility to be vulnerable with other believers today so that by choosing to live in the light, He might bring freedom and healing to our lives. 
  3. Pray that God would fill our church with the Holy Spirit by waking us up to all opportunities we have to experience more of God and help others to know and experience Him more. 

David Heim

Regional Pastor - Anaheim