Let Your Light Shine

Remember that little song children sing in Sunday School: “This little light of mine, I’m going to let it shine… Let it shine. Let it shine. Let is shine?”

Here’s more:  “Won’t let Satan put it out. I’m going to let it shine…”

“Hide it under a bushel. No! I’m going to let it shine…”

I love songs about light. Perhaps it’s because I’ve battled the darkness of depression for much of my life. Satan is always trying to drag me back into the dark of negative thinking. He attempts to drown me in my negative emotions. But I’m learning to live in the light much more of the time, and it is a wonderful thing.

When I looked up my name in a baby book years ago this is what I discovered: Elaine is a derivative of Helen which means bearer of light. I embrace that as a goal for my life and as a goal for this new year. I want the light of Christ to shine brighter in me and through me than it ever has before. As a writer and speaker, I feel privileged to have the opportunity to reach out to those who are in darkness to give a word of encouragement—to shine my light.

Each one of us can shine our lights into someone’s dark world—even if we feel that we are in darkness ourselves. Sometimes that is what keeps me going during hard times—to be able to reach out to others and give hope even when I’m battling hopelessness in certain situations.  

Lately when I’ve been thinking of “light,” the word “highlight” comes to mind.

What is the highlight of your day? is the question I used to ask patients during what we called the summation group—a group time where patients reviewed what happened that day and told if they met their goals.

When I’d ask, “What was the highlight of your day?” some patients couldn’t think of one good thing that happened, and they’d say, “I didn’t have one.”

Lately I’ve been writing down the highlights of 2013. I do this at the end of each year or the beginning of the new year as I reflect on all that I have to be grateful for in the previous year.

Here are just a handful of the many highlights I wrote in my journal under a heading of:  “Thank You, Lord, for”:

My visit with two friends from Michigan I haven’t seen in awhile.

Being reconnected with my best friend from high school.

My travels– which I listed.

My visits with my parents and other family members.

Making it through another year on my job.

The privilege of another year as a radio host and blogger.

Improving in guitar-playing and singing.

New songs I’ve written and started.

My counselor, John.

The healing that has taken place in our marriage.

My husband, Steve’s, continued love for me.

Special times with my daughters and granddaughter (I named some.)  

My continuing friendships with…and I named names.

I want to keep track of my highlights daily now. It’s too easy to get into a negative frame of mind. When that happens my light tends to go out, and then I can’t shine it for others to see. I need to see the light, so I can be the light.     

Jesus shines light into my darkness, but sometimes I just can’t see it. That’s because I’m too busy looking at my problems.

Here is my goal spelled out in Scripture:  

Let your light so shine before men that they may see your moral excellence and your praiseworthy, noble, and good deeds and recognize and honor and praise and glorify your Father Who is in heaven. Matthew 5:16 AMP

Will you join me in letting our lights shine?

Here is the link to a song that inspires me to let my light shine. It is “Pushing Back the Dark” by Josh Wilson.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=66wdK5q_Wr4

To hear more about “Letting Your Light Shine” listen to my radio show, “Hearts Set Free with Elaine” on Sunday, January 11, 2014 at 9:00am EST. Go to www.wtis1110.com and click on “Listen Live.” Or listen later in the archives. To do that, go to www.wtis1110.com and click on “shows.” Scroll down to “Hearts Set Free” and click. Go to the bottom right of my website to see the list of archived shows and click on the one you’d like to listen to.  

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About elainecreasman

I am a freelance writer and inspirational speaker. Since 1986 I have led the Suncoast Christian Writers Group.
This entry was posted in Spiritual Growth and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Let Your Light Shine

  1. Jane V. Reece says:

    Your attitude of gratitude sparkles and shines.

  2. Julie says:

    Encouraged by your true spoken words.

  3. bobbie norris says:

    never saw that depression in you Elaine, thanks for sharing, i always saw you as a good person with a nice sunshine smile and golden hair!
    from Bobbie guess what, i was always spinning around twirling baton and that helps your brain from depression! didn’t know it at the time!

  4. Elnora says:

    Wonderful words of encouragement, So many times we forget that just as Christ was and is the light of the world , so are we. We must bring the light of God into these times of darkness. Please continue to let God’s light shine through you,you are an inspiration to all.

  5. Elaine, love this post…so true…reminded me of this great quote I once read by Luci Swindoll: “A friend of mine was caught in an elevator during a power failure. At first, there was momentary panic as all seven strangers talked at once. Then my friend remembered the tiny flashlight he had in his pocket. When he turned it on, the fear dissipated. During the 45 minutes they were stuck together they told jokes, laughed, and even sang. God’s Word says we are that flashlight. Just as the flashlight draws power from its batteries, we draw power from Jesus. As light, we dissipate fear, bring relief, and lift spirits. We don’t even have to be big to be effective. We just have to be ’on.’”

    • Beth, Thanks for your comment. I love the story about being stuck in the elevator. And I do have to remind myself to be “on.” It is so easy to get self-absorbed and sink into darkness.

  6. Dawn Carter says:

    My 87 year old Mom is suffering with extreme anxiety and depression. Your comment about depression bringing on negative responses helped me to understand why my Mom is so negative about everything. My brother and I just moved her into Assisted Living and I saw so many things to be thankful for, but she just can’t seem to receive them. I know God wants to teach me something through this situation.

    Dawn

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