Shine As Lights

by Jessica Van Roekel

Do all things without grumbling or disputing, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast to the word of life. Philippians 2:14-16, ESV

The starry sky pierces the night like pin pricks in a lampshade. In the winter months, Orion marches across the dark curtain like a moving picture show. The North star glimmers and gleams as a beacon for travelers.

I stand in awe that God hung each star in its place and gave it its name (Psalm 147:4). The stars remind me that light overcomes darkness, and I remember that I have the same power within me.

But I must confess that I struggle to shine. My personal ambitions for glory and my desire for God’s glory wage a little war inside my heart. Because I struggle with my motives, sometimes it’s easier for me to not shine at all. But then I miss being part of God’s story in the world, so since it’s a story I want a part in, I keep wrestling.

God’s light inside us pierces the darkness of those around us who need it the most. Will we shine like stars?

The apostle Paul says, “Rejoice in the Lord always…. Whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things… and the God of peace will be with you” (Philippians 4:4, 8-9 ESV).

In Philippians 2:14-16, Paul reminds us that apart from God, people live in spiritual darkness. Followers of Christ must shine as lights in the world so that we reflect God’s light and show others the way to him.

Will we complain or rejoice? Will we grumble or lay down our rights?

Our attitudes toward everything we do impacts the way others see or don’t see God. For example, I don’t like cleaning sink drains; the smell makes me wrinkle my nose and curl my lips. But, with three girls in the house, this task needs to be done. I can show Jesus’ light to my family by choosing to do this and other things I don’t like without a grumbling heart.

Stardom comes in servanthood. Not from receiving the most “likes” in our social media pages. Not by being the most popular person in the room or the cool mom. It comes from doing what needs to be done, whether in front of people or behind the scenes, without complaining. We sparkle as we serve God with a willing and happy heart—brightening the world around us.

This article brought to you by the Advance Writers and Speakers Association (AWSA).

About the author: Jessica is a worship leader, speaker, and writer who writes at giving hope-filled inspiration addressing internal hurts in the light of God’s transforming grace. She believes that through Christ our personal histories don’t have to define our present or determine our future. Jessica lives in a rural setting with her husband and family. You can connect with her on Instagram and Facebook.

Join the conversation: How do you try to shine like the stars?

One thought on “Shine As Lights

  1. Jessica, I’m so glad you also concentrate on examining the heart’s motives. Although we will never achieve completely pure motives, I’m so glad the Lord uses us even when we have mixed motives. Thank you for your excellent post.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.