Today, our pastor shared a passage out of Ephesians 5 about walking in the light. When I got home and looked up this passage in the Message Bible, the heading for the chapter was "Wake up from your sleep!" Maybe that explains why, as he was preaching, I started to remember another sermon from many years ago. I wish I could remember who it was who shared this story because, even 20 years later, I think of it more times that you would imagine.
A visiting pastor shared the story of his three daughters. It seems that each had her own distinct personality, as children always do. These differences were most readily seen in the mornings.
When he would go in to wake them, the first would say, "I'm up," and then immediately roll over and go back to sleep. She would do this over and over until he pulled the covers off and made her get out of bed.
The second was a bit more, shall we say, demonstrative. When he would go in to turn on the light and wake her, he would immediately duck because she did NOT like being awakened one bit and a pillow was usually tossed in the direction of whomever had dared to disturb her sleep.
The third little girl was his favorite to wake up, so he saved her for last. She would turn over with a smile as if to say, "Oh...did I fall asleep? Thank you for waking me!" She greeted the light with a slight squint and a smile, ready to jump out of bed and greet the day.
I think of those three little girls often, and I wonder - which one am I? When God shines His light on something in my life, do I live in denial and say "I'm awake," and then roll back into my slumber hoping to not be disturbed? Do I get angry and toss whatever I can find at whomever dared to shine the light? Or will I be that third little girl? Will I squint a little and then receive the light with gladness?
The decision lies not in the light, but in me. Either way, the light is shining and it's time to wake up.
8-10You groped your way through that murk once, but no longer. You're out in the open now. The bright light of Christ makes your way plain. So no more stumbling around. Get on with it! The good, the right, the true—these are the actions appropriate for daylight hours. Figure out what will please Christ, and then do it.
Wake up from your sleep,
Climb out of your coffins;
Christ will show you the light!
So watch your step. Use your head. Make the most of every chance you get. These are desperate times!