[Church as a Lighthouse?]

[Church as a Lighthouse?]

We all have grown quite accustomed to the idea of Church being a Lighthouse. There are even Churches that are named Lighthouse Church…

However, the sermon last Sunday made me think. Darrel Harvey (same guy who brought up the idea of having coffee with Trinity) changed my opinion of the Church as a lighthouse.

The idea we usually get is this magnificent tall tower that beckons the lost ships to the land, shining its light in the darkness, an image that brings to mind Jesus’ words from Matthew 5:14:

You are the light of the world – like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden.

The imagery is almost borderline on romantic… yet, think of the other words of Jesus from the same Gospel according to Matthew 28 (MSG):

God authorized and commanded me to commission you: Go out and train everyone you meet, far and near, in this way of life, marking them by baptism in the threefold name: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Then instruct them in the practice of all I have commanded you.

The lighthouse image is wonderful and hope-inspiring, yet if one thinks about it, it’s an immovable tower that beckons the lost, yet does nothing really (besides shining the light) to help them come home.

Instead, Darrel pointed out, true followers of Christ’s teachings should be people with the flashlights venturing out into the darkness of the world to find those who are lost and share the light with them. Jesus said, go out and train everyone you meet – that hardly can be accomplished if we stay in place and just shine the light without moving from our comfortable place on a shoreline.

As I am writing this, I am reminded of the fact that I need to heed to my own words.

I’m off to grab a flashlight and venture into the wildness. Anyone else with me?

  • Love the picture and analogy! I totally agree with Darrel about the lighthouse/flashlight. I will join you but I need to buy me one of those halogen kind. My world is kind of dark.

    • mine as well – we can take a couple of Maglites 😉

      God bless, Bill 🙂 thanks for stopping by 😉

  • Great imagery – give Darrell my compliments 🙂

    Matthew 5:14-16 says: "You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven."

    Since he was talking to a crowd, one cannot be absolutely sure if he was talking individually or corprately to the people. But, it is safe to say that both "targets" should be considered.

    Far too many of us relinquish our evangelistic responsibilities to "ministers." But, as Darrell says, we ought to be out there "with flashlights," Hopefully, our individual deeds will meet this challenge.

    Also, the corporate church ought to stand out as a model of healthy community – a safe haven for people (who are all built for relationships). Hopefully, our corporate deeds will meet this challenge.

    • Far too many of us relinquish our evangelistic responsibilities to "ministers." – yeah, that's the common temptation… or an excuse. I know it has been an excuse for me for a long time and i hid behind my "INFJ" personality type saying that "well, i am a kid and i'm introverted, so yeah…"… thankfully now God's working at changing the insides (although i am still an introvert…)
      My recent post Church as a Lighthouse

    • I wanted to add to the conversation, but I don't think I can. I love Herb's thoughts.
      My recent post Not Holding the Elevator Door Open

  • Love the analogy…
    We are called to be the light…not the lighthouse. Funny thing about a beam of light: the further it travels the more widespread it is.

    Thank you for sharing Zee!
    My recent post God Alone

  • Jessica

    I like the analogy! Thanks for sharing!

    I saw a friend's FB status that totally reminded me of this. "Desperately needs a flash light." She was most likely not thinking along the lines of this blog entry, but it got me thinking.

    We as humans bumble along, in the dark, until we see Christ's light (directly or thru someone). We don't always recognize our need for the light, but rather adapt to life in the dark. We learn how to make do, to step around the things that stub our toes. We don't always want light, because we know that'll make us squint and require us to readjust our whole worldview.

    But then it's up to us to choose to live in that light, and then we are responsible for taking a flashlight for ourselves, shining the light and repeating the same process with others.

    ….I'm beginning to imagine this scenario as a skit/drama.

    • hmm, good idea re: the skit! i was thinking about getting myself a t-shirt with a flashlight on i… we'll see how that goes.

  • Great message! Stings me a bit so yes I will grab a flashlight and hope God will make me trip over someone. I am such a wimp in this. May we each shine our light in our own way wherever we are today…putting in new batteries. Thanks!
    My recent post Today’s Affirmation- I find blessings at the end of the rope

    • glad it encouraged you, Tom 🙂 i might need some new batteries too 🙂

  • Zee, this post gave me some good stuff to chew on for a message I'll be preaching in a few months on "passing it on" – thanks 🙂
    My recent post anticipatinghispresence

    • you're welcome, Herb. all credit goes to Darrel however – it was his idea of flashlights 🙂 i merely shared it here.

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