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Ephesians 5

Being Light Amidst the Darkness

We all have people in our lives who leave us feeling refreshed and at peace after hanging out with them. They encourage us with their thoughtful wisdom and prayers. On the flip side, other people can drain us and leave us feeling unsettled by the negativity and bitterness in their speech and actions. 

It’s so very easy for me to point fingers at others, but Ephesians 5 reminds me to examine my own speech and actions. Am I speaking “goodness, righteousness, and truth . . . giving thanks always” (v9 &20), or am I participating in “fruitless works and foolish talking or empty arguments” (v11, 4, 6)?

I think what makes this passage even more challenging is remembering the circumstances Paul faced as he wrote these words. If ever there would be a time to be complaining or feeling bitter, I think being imprisoned/under house arrest for sharing the gospel could definitely be one of them. Instead Paul used his time living under these circumstances to further encourage and remind the church at Ephesus of their calling. 

Our present circumstances bear some resemblance to being under house arrest. Stay/Safer at home orders have severely limited our freedom in the last few months and it is uncertain when or if we’ll be free to resume living like we did before COVID-19. 

But as Paul teaches us here, our present circumstances provide an opportunity to live out our callings in a really important way. In a time where the isolation, loneliness or uncertainty can feel dark and heavy, I want to speak and be light – we are dearly loved children who Christ gave himself for (v1), Christ shines on us (v14), and we should make the most of our time (v16). How better to use our time than to point people to real hope?

When I look back on the days of quarantine, I want to know that I used it as a time to speak light into the darkness, truth where there is untruth, and to have encouraged the people God put in my path rather than add to the chaos and confusion. I want to be wise to use the extra time or unique opportunities God gave me while being at home more. I want to be a fragrant offering to the world on behalf of the Gospel. 

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Weekly reflection by

Sara Laverty