Turn on the light

When you’re the youngest kid in a family, it’s inevitable that you’ll end up with an eclectic treasure trove of toys/junk. At least that’s the case for our youngest son, Ezra. His three older siblings amassed plenty of plastic figurines during their early childhood, and now those Happy Meal toys and army men and Fisher-Price animals and Matchbox cars are in various bins and boxes in his bedroom, if not strewn across the floor waiting to be stepped on by my bare feet.

 

One of his favorite collections is a set he picked out when we traveled to Disney World a few years ago. It’s made up of figurines from the movie The Lion King. He likes pretending that the hyenas are attacking the lions with the ultimate fate of Pride Rock in jeopardy. Recently, he asked me to help him find Scar, the main bad guy from the movie. Ezra didn’t feel like he could satisfactorily play out the drama without him.

 

Now most moms know that they are often the only ones who can find lost things. It’s not uncommon for me to hear the following: “Where are my shoes? Have you seen my library book? I can’t find my jersey!” And apparently I’m the only one who possesses the unique ability to find these things that I don’t own nor am I responsible for. (Often, all that is required to find the lost item is looking under other things, and, for some reason, this is a difficult skill for kids to master.)

 

I instructed Ezra to comb through his bins of toys and his toy chest. After a few minutes, he came back to the living room and reported that he had been unsuccessful. He said that he had dumped all of his toys on the floor, but he still couldn’t find Scar. I walked back to his bedroom and saw the piles of toys, noticing that the light was off and the window blind was still closed from the night before. Ezra was standing behind me, so I asked him, “Did you look for Scar with the light off?” He answered, “Yes.” I told him that it’s difficult to look for something in the dark. In fact, it’s nearly impossible. Knowing my proclivity for finding things, he decided to believe me. We switched the light on and started digging.

 

The Bible mentions light and the goodness of light hundreds of times. We see that God made light at Creation, just as He is light with no darkness in him. The Bible says that we can’t simultaneously live in the light and hate a fellow believer.  It says that people can be walking in darkness, then they can be transformed once the light dawns. We read Jesus’ instructions not to hide our lights under a bowl or a bed.

 

Jesus also tells a story about a woman who has ten coins and loses one. She lights a lamp and sweeps her house, carefully searching for the lost coin. Once found, she rejoices, calling her friends and neighbors over for a party. (Jesus’ parable doesn’t specify that the woman was a mother, but it makes sense that only a mom would be able to find the lost coin.)

 

Light is essential, from growing plants to finding lost things. Just as a sunflower leans toward the sun’s rays as it climbs taller, we should set our sights on good things and allow the light to reveal what we’ve lost.

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