“Light Reflections”

Ever since we did the “A Little Light” series, I have added to my daily prayers the request for God to allow me to be a “light” to those around me. Every day. For me to be a light in a dark world, into which I, like all of us, walk every day. We wrote about how, if we will be that light, other people will notice-whether they like it or not. We have that Light inside of us, but do we “let it shine?”
Ouch!
We also wrote about, “God, Why did You put me here? In such a dark place?” Exactly! That’s the reason!

The darker the place, the more light is needed. And, the darker the place, the greater difference, even a small light makes. So, the answer to “God … What am I doing here?” is answered, as Jesus always did, in the form of a question: “What am I doing here?” As in … “What am I doing here?” Enough? Doing what He placed me here to do?” Being the light He put me here to be?
Ouch!

So, this past Friday night … somewhere around 6:00-7:00PM, we had a power outage. Way up here, in the North County, this is a rarity. Our power, our lights, just don’t go out very often. But, here, on the first night of School Vacation, the power went out.
Total Darkness.

We lit candles. And, it was beautiful. It always takes me back to when I was growing up, and we lost power, especially during an ice storm. We used wood for heat, and we had plenty of candles and lanterns, so when the power went out, we were, sometimes, the only house on our road which had heat. It was so warm. It was always a reminder of the “old days,” when there was no electricity. Since we were too young to remember how it was “back then,” our only glimpses of that life were from watching the “Waltons” and “Little House on the Prairie.”

So, here we were, just Carol and I, and the lights were out … no telephone … no internet … We don’t watch much TV, if ever, but, it still seemed like a “loss” of some kind not to have it available … no radio either … even though we listen less to radio than we watch television …
It was so awesome, just sitting there, both in our rocking chairs, just talking (remember that?)
There is still no one else I’d rather talk to, or rock with, than Carol. She rocks! And, the candlelight in her eyes … matched only by the glow of just being with her …

It was 9:00PM when we figured that, even if the lights went back on, it was too late to cook supper. So, we made the decision to go to McDonalds (in the next town over). Keep in mind that we don’t go to restaurants often, and, for us, McDonalds is a real treat. I always joke if we should call ahead to let them know that we were coming, and that, “This evening, we’ll be ordering from the Dollar Menu.” Call me whatever … but, and after working at McDonalds for two different periods in my life … I still love going there, and I had just as soon go there as any fancy restaurant anywhere … We are thankful for everything, so we are not hard to please.

Anyway, as we were leaving, blowing out one candle at a time, it was amazing … amazing … how much light just one candle made. God reinforced it again for me … just one candle … one light … makes such a difference … And, the darker the surroundings … the more of a difference just a small light made …

I thought about something I write about every day … how I thank God for the (what we call) “simple things” of life … like electricity … and heat … the things we take for granted every day … I thought to myself, “Did I thank God for Electricity this morning???”

We got our order at McDonalds, and then went to our “usual table,” which, even months between visits, we go directly to. At our booth, me on one side and Carol on the other, we joined hands, across the table, and prayed. Said “Grace.” Regardless of where we are, we don’t eat until we pray. Even if one of us is away from the table, neither one of us starts to eat until we pray. That’s just what we do. Don’t you? Anyway, it seemed like just seconds after we prayed, that a young man who worked there, in full uniform, appeared between our table and the soda machine. He got our attention as he walked over, both arms outstretched, and exclaiming how wonderful it was to see what he had just seen … two people praying “in public,” and how rare a sight that was. And, most of all … what it meant to him, personally, to see this.

I tried to answer him, as best I could, with “We do it because we are thankful,” and that’s why we do it. We are thankful. Man! Even at McDonalds, on a cold, windy, and dark night … you just never know who is watching. Just know that people are watching you … every minute of every day. Even if you aren’t at work! But … he was …

It reminds me of a time when Carol and I were at the airport in Philadelphia, PA. We literally spent the day at the airport, as weather had halted air traffic all across the eastern seaboard. We’ve spent a lot of time in airports, and rarely eat a meal there (no Dollar Menu in Airports!). We had ordered from one of the “fast food” restaurants, and had taken our seats at a table near a window, as I still love to watch the planes come in and out. Once seated, Carol on one side of the table and me on the other, we joined hands across the table and said a prayer over the food. From out of nowhere, a lady came over and introduced herself to us. I’ll never forget what she said:
“I knew, when I first saw you, that you were Christians. When I saw you pray, that just confirmed it.”
We have met some great people at airports.

You just never know who is watching. Just know that people are watching you … every minute of every day. Even if you aren’t at work! But … she was …

Lord Jesus, help me to be that light to others … at home, and away … to reflect Your Light … always …
Even on dark days … where it’s needed most …
And, help me to remember, most of all, that it is not only them who are watching …
But, You …

Blessings,
Richard.Vincent.Rose.

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