There is a bank at a major intersection in my town. They have a two story, circular glass Atrium made entirely of windows. To the windows near the top, they added a window covering/decal with their bank services on them. During the day, drivers passing by learn that this bank has great lending rates and a bunch of other banky stuff that people with money need to know. As I was driving home at night soon after the window coverings were put up, I noticed they were gone; I could see right through to the chandelier. When they showed up again the next day, I realized my ignorance.
Duh, the coverings were still there! When the light is on the outside, the coverings can be seen, but when the light is on from the inside and it’s dark out, those coverings might as well be gone.
See, we put a lot of outward trappings on our Christianity. Sometimes it’s a tradition, a conviction, perhaps even a doctrine that we hope will convince everyone to be saved. It doesn’t have to be necessarily bad, but that’s not the point.
Let’s be honest. This world is going to hell in a hand-basket and sin hasn’t gotten any less black recently. The good news is that like those windows, when it gets darker we begin to show the brilliant light of Christ within us — or we should. Windows aren’t designed for the window coverings. They’re designed to let the Light Source shine on the darkness.
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 5:16 (ESV)
As night thickens, are my personality and my convictions fading and the Light becoming a beacon to the lost? I’ll have to start asking myself that every time I pass that bank. Or find another route home.