I have a confession to make… I have allowed frustration to spill over into utter disdain for street lights. Street lights drive me up the wall.
Now you need to know that I am a special case: at some point in my life a chip was embedded somewhere on my person that triggers a street light to turn yellow when I get within 100 yards of one. I don’t know where this chip is or when it was implanted but I know it is there. Every time I get close to a street light it changes. Hopefully now you understand my frustration, no, my complete disdain for street lights.
Our scripture verse is 1Th 5:18 In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. The Apostle Paul was wrapping up his letter to the Thessalonian people and just before he closes he challenged us to give thanks “in every thing”.
Giving thanks is part of my every day routine already. I offer up a prayer of thanksgiving before my meals. During my morning prayer I devote part of the time to being thankful for my family, my job and my church among other things. Evening prayers will contain thanks for the day and I will be specific according to how the day unfolded.
It doesn’t take too much effort to thank God for the blessings in life. What about street lights? How can I possibly be thankful for street lights?
We were privileged to have a foreign missionary visiting our church this week. His sermon text was in Luke chapter 17. Part of that first verse reads as follows… “It is impossible but that offences will come:” This was an awesome sermon on how not to be offended when offenses come.
Offenses do not always take the shape of a nosy neighbor, a mother in law or an overbearing boss; they could be inanimate objects like street lights.
Our visiting minister reminded us that Luke 17:1 contains a promise from Jesus just like Heb 13:5 … for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee. This verse in Hebrews is the type of promises we like to hear but Jesus also promised us in Luke 17:1 that offenses will come. How am I going to deal with street lights?
Street Light Management
Offenses, street lights, will come so I must learn how to deal with this.
One of the points in our visiting minister’s sermon was taken from Luke 17:11-16. This is the account of the ten lepers that called out to Jesus to be healed. Jesus told them to present themselves to the Priests. (This is in accordance to the procedure found in Leviticus chapter 13 concerning lepers who now believe themselves to be clean) They exercised faith in setting out to go to the priests and as they began their journey they were healed.
One of the lepers returned to worship and gave thanks to Jesus. Ding, ding, ding… Here is my answer!
Almighty God sent His only son Jesus to die on the cross for my sin. When I accepted God’s gracious gift I was redeemed by the suffering of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. I was changed forever by his pain and suffering. How can I possibly be offended by a street light?
Therefore I am resolved: at each and every street light that turns red I will stop and reflect on what Jesus did for me and give thanks.
Was I really talking about street lights? We can get so hung up on the silliest things and allow insignificant items, events or people to just ruin our day. We even justify our behavior like I did with the implanted chip. “It’s not my fault, I was born that way.” If you are a Christian you were born again; we are spiritually remade with a new purpose and new goals. We are not supposed to return again to our old ways.
When next you are faced with a street light turning red, reflect on what Jesus did for you and give thanks.