So what would it be like to live in total darkness? Moping and groping your way around because there is no light to let you see where you are or where you are going. Tripping and stumbling as you reach out into the blackness for even a tiny flicker of illumination to give you an idea of your surroundings.
No doubt, total darkness would be a major bummer. And that’s exactly what the people who live in The City of Ember are facing in the future as their source of light begins to run out of power.
No, there isn’t really a City of Ember. But there is a movie by that name that develops a very interesting storyline:
For generations, the people of the City of Ember have flourished in an amazing world of glittering lights - underground. Built as a refuge for humanity and powered by a massive generator - this City will only sustain for 200 years. Now Ember is falling into darkness as the generator fails, and the dazzling lights begin to flicker and fade (Source: http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/city_of_ember/).
The excitement in the movie builds as the heroes of the story desperately attempt to solve the problem of growing darkness and eventual extinction. They discover information that can potentially save their world, but they must weave their way through corruption and deceit to reach their goal.
Sound familiar? If not, you should know that this is pretty much a mirror image of how the Bible describes the conditions of our world and the mission of God’s children. Let me paint a picture for you from God’s Word:
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was formless and empty, and darkness covered the deep waters. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the surface of the waters.
Then God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. And God saw that the light was good. Then he separated the light from the darkness. God called the light "day" and the darkness "night" (Genesis 1:3-5).
The beginning of time started with God bringing light into a completely dark universe. He spoke…and light was created.
But light and dark are not just properties of the physical world, they are also the nature of the spiritual world:
In the beginning the Word already existed.
The Word was with God,
and the Word was God.
He existed in the beginning with God.
God created everything through him,
and nothing was created except through him.
The Word gave life to everything that was created,
and his life brought light to everyone.
The light shines in the darkness,
and the darkness can never extinguish it (John 1:1-5).
The “Word” that John refers to is Jesus - and he points out that Christ’s life brought illumination to a dark world. That’s why Jesus calls Himself the “light of the world.”
In fact, every one of you reading these words is either in a state of darkness or in a state of light. If you have trusted in Jesus, you are in the light. If you have not, you are in darkness. Here’s how the Bible describes this concept:
Jesus replied, “My light will shine for you just a little longer. Walk in the light while you can, so the darkness will not overtake you. Those who walk in the darkness cannot see where they are going. Put your trust in the light while there is still time; then you will become children of the light” (John 12:35-36).
For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light (Ephesians 5:8). You are all sons of the light and sons of the day. We do not belong to the night or to the darkness (1 Thessalonians 5:5).
You are a chosen people. You are royal priests, a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light (1 Peter 2:9).
If you put on “God glasses” and looked around the planet, you would see people either walking in the light, or people walking in the darkness. Followers of Christ are called “children of light” so we can shine for those trapped in darkness and help them break free by trusting in Jesus.
Think about it…ever wonder why sin, death, and destruction is often portrayed as “darkness”? That’s why we have an incredible mission as the children of light to let it shine as bright and beautifully as possible with whatever time we have left in this dark world. We have the message that can set people free - so listen to the very words of God as He speaks directly to you:
I am sending you to them to open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me' (Acts 26:17-18).
Time to turn on the light!
Head: The Bible refers to Christians as “children of light” so we can battle the darkness in the world that keeps people trapped in sin and death.
Heart: Wouldn’t it be cool to be a part of an adventure like the heroes in City of Ember? Wouldn’t it be awesome to have a message that could save an entire civilization? Well guess what? You do! The question is - what are you going to do about it?
Hands: The primary way we bring light into the world is by imitating Jesus Christ in all we do, and telling people the gospel message as often as we can.
Lane Palmer serves as a writer for Dare 2 Share Ministries (D2S) in Arvada, Colorado, a ministry committed to energizing and equipping teenagers to know, live, share and own their faith in Jesus. For more information about D2S, please visit www.dare2share.org.