During the 1960s and 1970s while John and I farmed, we also had a heating business servicing all of Manitoulin Island. We were located in the centre of the island, so the distance was pretty well the same for service calls going east or west.
Occasionally, customers would want to travel in the winter months, and they would talk to John regarding being away: “How can I make it easier for my neighbour to keep watch on my place?” In the country, there is sometimes quite a distance between neighbours. The neighbour would commit to looking in on the place two or three times a week, but there were times when he was not available.
In his service trucks, John carried a little instrument that was called “Winter Watchman”. This little device was hung in the front window of the house, facing the road. A bulb was screwed into it and it was plugged in. There was a thermostat that was set to the temperature that the owners wanted their house to be at while they were away. Neighbours going by kept an eye on the bright light and knew that everything was okay.
If the light were out, the neighbour with the key would check to see if the furnace was off or the bulb was burnt out. John would get a service call if necessary. Quite often when we were in town, someone would stop John and say that the light in the window was a good idea.
“When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, ‘I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.'” (John 8:12 NIV)
“But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.” (1 John 1:7 NIV)
As a child of God, my light is to shine to everyone around me. Others should see Christ in me. They should feel free to ask why I live as I do. Believers need to encourage and fortify each other. We need to pray for each other and watch out for each other, so that we keep the light shining and don’t let it go out.
“Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe as you hold out the word of life.” (Philippians 2:14-16a NIV)
When we watch and hear the news these days, there is so much negativity and evil in our world, but we need to keep our faith and trust grounded in the one who said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” (Hebrews 13:5b NIV)
Prayer: Heavenly Father, we ask that You would keep Your people shining the light of Jesus Christ to this world. Help us to show God’s love to believers, family, friends, and neighbours. Help us to remember the love and light shown to us at Calvary. Amen.
Elliot Lake, Ontario, Canada
Reprinted from the PresbyCan Daily Devotional with the author’s permission