In the final scene of Cast Away, Tom Hanks comes to a four way intersection, unsure of which way to go. The lone survivor of a plane crash, everyone assumed Hanks character Chuck Noland was dead, moving on with their lives despite never finding his body. Stuck on a remote island for a couple of years, Hanks had ample time to reflect upon his years on earth. Like many individuals consumed by advancement, promotions and work, Hanks never took the time to appreciate life. After listening to a sermon last Sunday morning, a spirit of conviction overwhelmed my soul. Somewhere along the way, I have forgotten to reflect God’s glory.
And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit, 2 Corinthians 3:18.
On a sunny day, you can see your reflection from a still body of water. However, when windy conditions arise, this reflection disappears, broken by choppy waves. Looking back on my last seven years, I haven’t experienced many calm days. Yet, I have allowed busyness to distract me from what’s really important in life. Instead of living for a higher purpose, I have regressed, defaulting back to survivor mode. Rather than concentrating on glorying God, the only thing people see are my selfish desires, void of a servant’s heart. This sad reality has awoken my soul from years of a spiritual slumber.
“You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven,” Matthew 5:14-16.
No one likes to be ridiculed, teased or persecuted. Yet, Jesus told his followers to embrace these attacks. Unfortunately, this harsh climate is causing some believers to deflect, hide from or minimize their relationship with God. Jesus addressed this fear in the first century, providing instructions to be bold, shining God’s light wherever you go. One of Jesus’ disciples takes a similar stance, 1 Peter 3:17-18, encouraging followers to not worry about suffering for doing good. This suffering should be viewed as a badge of honor. If you can reach this point of spiritual maturity, then the world will begin to see glimpses of God’s glory, a reflection of the love of Jesus inside your heart.
by Jay Mankus