Basking in the Light
By Doug Bing, Washington Conference president
Imagine the mental picture you may have of towns in Norway, and you would most likely come up a town that looked like Rjukan. But Rjukan has a problem.
From the pictures I have seen of this small town, it appears to be a typical mountain town. This town is nestled between colossal mountains on both sides that reach all the way up to 6,000 feet above sea level.
Rjukan is located in the far north which causes problems in the winter when the days are short, and the sun is further south. These mountains in the winter block every single ray of sunshine for 6 months of the year.
Sounds depressing doesn’t it?
But it all changed in 2013.
On that day technology brought the sun back to Rjukan in the middle of winter. You see on that day three giant computer-powered mirrors installed on the mountaintop were switched on and reflected the sunlight into a 200 square yard area of the town square.
People piled into the town square and relaxed in the sun in the middle of winter on benches that had been placed there just for that purpose. (You can see photos and learn more of the story here.)
The interesting thing however is that 100 years before this a bookkeeper that lived in Rjukan was tired of the lack of sun and dreamed up the mirror idea.
But it didn’t come to pass because while it was a dream they didn’t have the ability or the technology to build the mirrors or the computers in order to reflect the sun. Now, however, every winter you will see the sunlight shining on this town square and people there enjoying the sun year around.
This past week we turned our clocks back yet again and now the sun is going down early. And yes, we are further north, so it is even earlier here than other places in the US. Plus, the rains have come so it seems even darker.
There is another darkness that is also settling on the world.
Our world is fragmented. It is sick and sin filled. Hatred is everywhere. War is happening in multiple places in the world. Statistics show that crime is increasing. Disasters in nature are intensifying as well.
Jesus said all these things would happen and they are happening more and more and with greater frequency and intensity.
But he also said that we are to still be shining the light of the gospel into every dark place there is. Matthew 24:14 states “And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come.”
He also said in his last words to his disciples in Matthew 28 that we are to go into all nations shining the light of Jesus into every dark place.
We don’t need mirrors attached to computers to do this work. We do, however, need each of us to be reflectors of Jesus in every aspect of our lives. In our neighborhoods, our workplaces, our communities, and in our churches and schools.
You can be that reflection of Jesus simply by asking each day for Holy Spirit power to fill you and point you to those you can speak with and share Jesus with.