The Point Abino Lighthouse (pictured above) was built in 1917 and lit for the first time in 1918. At 95 ft. in height it is considered the most elegant lighthouse on the Ontario shores of the Great Lakes. For 77 years the tower shone brightly and fulfilled its life-saving duties. That was until it was decommissioned and went dark in 1995. 22 years later it began to shine once again thanks to the efforts of the Point Abino Lighthouse Preservation Society. To celebrate the beacon’s 100 years the PALPS restored the tower to its original splendor and lit its 2,000 lbs. Fresnel lens on May 1st of this year.
Lighthouses were built to last and to withstand turbulent weather, but many have suffered abandonment due to advancements in navigational technology. The life-saving stories associated with these Sentinels of the Sea are truly awe-inspiring. No wonder people have come together to form organizations dedicated to their restoration, relighting, and preservation.
If you’ve been constantly reflecting the light of Christ ever since you came to know Him as Savior and have never experienced a flickering or temporary power outage then you are most likely a recent convert. However, if you have experienced (or are experiencing) moments when your light has been snuffed out leaving you temporarily in the dark, then you’ve known the Lord for a while and this devotion will encourage now or the next time you go through a dark period in your life [Read ‘Spiritual Blackouts‘].
As long as we live and breath on this earth we will encounter times when our light will dim or even burn out. In other words, spiritual, emotional, and physical challenges are bound to occur and cause setbacks in our daily routines. That’s because while we are not of this world we are still in it.1 As mortal beings, we are subject to distress, pain, and even death. That is, if we don’t hear the trumpet sound before then.2
It is said that you cannot exercise patience unless you are forced to wait, that you cannot enjoy peace unless you have been in conflict, and that you cannot truly rest if you have not experienced exhausting labor. If you agree, then the same can be said of light. You cannot appreciate it unless you have undergone a period of darkness. The lyrics from that old hymn (Amazing Grace), “I once was blind, but now I see” can be recited/sang by anyone, but these words are more than just a liturgical verse to those who can truly identify with it. To have been in spiritual darkness and then able to “see the light” (of Christ) is not just a reason to sing, but to uninhibitedly praise God and proclaim His goodness to all mankind, especially to those who are still in spiritual darkness. It’s like being a decommissioned lighthouse who has been given a new lamp and lens to shine and once again fulfill its true purpose.
Those who have temporarily or permanently lost their physical sight have testified that there is no other sensory input more valuable and appreciated. I recently surveyed a number of family members and friends and asked them if they were to live with only one of the five senses which would they choose. 95% chose sight. That’s because in darkness you cannot appreciate the beauty of color, texture, shape, and form. In darkness you are lost without a sense of direction. Gollum’s riddle, in The Lord of the Rings, perfectly defines darkness. “It cannot be seen, cannot be felt, cannot be heard, cannot be smelt. It lies behind stars and under hills, and empty holes it fills. It comes first and follows after, ends life, kills laughter” [Read ‘Light vs. Darkness Pt.2′].
We will all experience dark times in our lives. Times when our light will temporarily stop shining due to a tragedy, spiritual carelessness, mental or physical illness, or unconfessed sin. These are the times when we need to totally surrender to the Holy Spirit of God [Read The Keeper of our Light] and seek spiritually mature counsel [Read Every Lighthouse Needs a Maria].
We were not made to travel the road of life alone. We were created for fellowship. Fellowship with God and with people. But the truth is that there will be times when we will find ourselves alienated from both. Either subconsciously or by choice. Yet our loving and gracious Heavenly Father never forsakes us, especially when we walk through the dark valley of the shadow of death. He is always there to comfort us and, from time to time, send assistant keepers who will help us rekindle the light of joy, hope, and salvation.
I pray that as you read this devotion you are brightly shining for Christ. If not, then take courage. This devotion is intended to help relight the beacon within you by reminding you of God’s faithfulness and linking you to some of my previous devotions which are relevant to the topic. I encourage you to read them. After all, it is His light that God wants you to shine once again [Read His Light is Your Light].
Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank you for your life-saving light. The light that has brought me closer to you. The light that others need to see in me so they too are drawn to you. When my light dims out due to the challenges in life remind me of your unfailing love and rekindle the fire of your Spirit within me that I may continue to shine for you. In Jesus name, I pray, Amen.
“I am not asking that You take them out of the world, but that You keep them from the evil one. They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world.” – John 17: 15-16
“After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever.” -1 Thessalonians 4:17
“Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.” -Psalm 23:4
-ALL SCRIPTURE IS QUOTED FROM THE NIV EXCEPT WHERE SPECIFIED.