Those who desire to advance the cause of Christ in our world face many significant challenges. Among the difficulties is a multitude of temptations toward becoming embittered.
There are just so many situations in life where we are unappreciated, overlooked or neglected! Add to them unwarranted gossip and criticism, and worst of all—betrayal, and a cauldron of darkness can be the result.
The Apostle John was clear to say that walking in the light is essentially synonymous with walking in love toward our brothers and sisters in Christ. When fail to walk in love, we live in darkness, abiding in some way, shape or form under the dominion of death.
It certainly is natural that we would become embittered, hardened and jaded when our sacrifices are ignored or we are mistreated by the very people we are trying to help, but God’s call on our lives is not to a natural existence. He desires that we would draw upon His supernatural grace to overcome any such temptations.
In pondering this issue recently I came to a new clarity of understanding. By default darkness can only advance darkness and light can only advance light. We may be able to draw upon our gifts and talents in our efforts to build ministries and touch people, but if we want lasting influence that will honor God, walking in the light is not an option.
Over the past several years I have been provided with many wonderful opportunities to be offended by the actions or inaction of others. Though not without struggle, I’ve done my best to stay yielded to God, walking in forgiveness and to keeping my heart soft toward Him and toward others. More and more I am realizing that this isn’t simply a healthy approach to the issues of life and ministry—it is necessary. If I want to have an increased measure of influence in the world around me, it is imperative that I walk in the light.
Success attained apart from a solid foundation of heart transformation will eventually crumble to the detriment of all involved. There is quite simply no room for darkness in our hearts if we are to truly be ambassadors of the kingdom of light!