Life Through the Lens: The lights have not gone out

Kevin Schrapel pushes back against the negative narrative we hear about our world.

This post was contributed by Kevin Schrapel, and is the author’s personal opinion.

We might be tempted to think and even feel, “the lights have gone out!”

TV and radio news focuses on COVID-19, the massive troubles and horrifying images coming out of Afghanistan, bushfires where we never expected them, floods and earthquakes which we are told are “unprecedented”, causing damage, loss of life and trauma.

Then there are the personal threats to life and peace of mind: bullying and racism, robbery and arson in our neighbourhoods.

Daily the list continues to expand until we are tempted to give up and think, “What’s the use of trying?”

Let’s not give up, but instead look around and consciously see, admire, and affirm the good and uplifting actions, thoughts, and words all around us every day: the kind and unexpected word, the smile from a stranger, the phone call from a friend you were not expecting, the phone call you made to a friend.

See the people in our community going the extra mile, bringing comfort, peace and safety without being asked and without thought of reward.

We often see these lights of goodness and compassion and wonder “how?” and “why?”

I believe when Jesus said, “I am the light of the world; whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life” (John 8:12), he was offering us and showing us all a way to push back against the darkness.

Even when facing death on a cross, he trusted that his loving father had things in control.

He also made a statement: “The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it” (John 1:5).

He was referring to himself as the light sent by God to change lives, but he also said, “Peace be with you! As the father has sent me, I am sending you” (John 20:21).

Over the millenia, people have believed those words and pushed back the darkness.

Yes, mistakes have been made.

But the light of God’s love, demonstrated by Jesus and passed on for us to share, pushes back the darkness and replaces it with love, care, support, and forgiveness.

Live, love, shine bright and push back the darkness!

God bless.

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