Q: How many Psychiatrists does it take to change a light bulb? A: Only one, but the bulb has got to really WANT to change.
Q: How many cops does it take to screw in a lightbulb ? A: None. It turned itself in.
There are thousands of these jokes. But my question is not really a joke!
Have you noticed how much of the church world has gotten pretty dim these days. Not much light to be found in a lot of places. What with all the control, posturing, jealousy, ambition at the platform - not to mention, the immorality and indecent behavior! The darkness of evil falsity and increasing lack of values savagely tries to extinguish all the radiance of the Church.
Hey, but does anyone really care if it's darker? Can anyone really do anything about it? Of course, we can cop out and say that we're "praying." But, is there more? Do we have any authority to shine more intensely as a Body?
We don't need a new kind of light bulb. It's not a matter of saving electricity! It's the NEED for light! The reality of Light is obscured from the world because of us!
Sure, yes, there are some wonderful decent leaders around. But, many of them are ineffective, hurting, disappointed. Many are unappreciated. Many are poor and desperate for basic needs. The question is, "How can we become a brighter bulb?" Or are we almost burned out?
In 1879, Thomas Edison invented a oxygenless bulb with a carbon filament that burned a whole forty hours! He continued to improve his ideas until they could last 1200 hours. We don't have to invent a longer lasting bulb, nor do we need to figure out how to light it. We have the Light! It's already lit! We just need to know who we are and then reveal it!
But, who are we?
Paul prayed that the eyes of the BELIEVER’S heart would be en-LIGHT-ened. From this, we understand that although these believers had the capacity to “see,” they didn’t see clearly (Eph.1:18-23). They needed light! Paul prayed that the Ephesians would progressively transform their thinking until they became en-lightned to SEE.
Notice that Paul didn’t ask God to open their eyes. God won’t do this against our will or without our volition. Paul prayed that they would open their eyes! When the eye of our heart is enlightened to SEE, it enlightens our knowing.
As we read further, we find that enlightenment was needed in order to “KNOW” something. Eph 1:18-20, “I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may KNOW the
The word “KNOW,” in verse 18, is the word “eido” which means to perceive with spiritual in-SIGHT, with the eyes or “SENSES,” to discover, to watch to see what needs to be done. These eyes see what to inspect. They behold and experience. Eido also means to know how to use, to understand, to be skilled in, to cherish. or pay attention.
Paul tells about three different concepts that our enLIGHTened eyes should know (eido). LIGHT allows us to see differently and find an absolute knowing. Paul prayed that we would SEE the following.
1. WE ARE the brightness of the HOPE of His calling. Paradise
2. WE ARE the riches of the GLORY of God's inheritance.
4. We SEE the greatness of his POWER toward us.
#1. We SEE that we become BRIGHT-ness of the "Hope of His Calling"
Suddenly, the en-LIGHT-enment of the EYES of our heart causes us to KNOW God's purpose in our lives. To be the BRIGHT-ness of the "hope" (anticipation of pleasure, expectation, or confidence) of HIS calling. That's you... and me!
"Calling" (kaleho) means "to incite by words." That means that the Father (Who foreknew us and foreordained us) has called us forth by His words. We are a word spoken forth by God from the beginning. His calling draws us toward the fulfilment of our lives.
Paul prayed that you fully realize that God pleasurably anticiped you and called YOU forth into destiny by His words before the foundation of the world. You are the BRIGHTNESS of His hope.
#2. We SEE that the GLORY of His inheritance is IN US.
The saints ARE God's inheritance! This section literally reads, "His GLORY is the rich inheritance that is INDWELT (inside, within) THE SAINTS!!!" What a concept! All of God's promises and His inexhaustible supply of His blazing GLORY are resident and resplendent IN US. Paul prayed that we would realize that we are God's Glory and his lavish inheritance.
#3. We SEE the greatness of the Power of God (vs. 19- 23).
We're supposed to SEE "The exceeding greatness of His power (dunamis = a dynamo of inherent power stored up inside) to us-ward who believe, according to the working (energeia = outwardly released power and energy - strong energy to produce massive light) of his mighty (ischus = forceful power, like a king taking the throne) power (kractos = power like a volcano, ruling, vigor, and dominion)."
Light allows us to rule and reign through the POWER we perceive.
These are staggering implications. Jesus, Who fully expresses life and GLORY fully dwells IN US. He wants to restore us to the
Reading further, Paul prayed, "That power is like the working of his mighty strength, which he exerted in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, far above all rule and authority, power and dominion..." (Eph. 1:20). That's what we seek! The power that raised Jesus from the dead will raise us up from our deadness.
Flip the switch in your mind - and see the light of God's everlasting plan!
This critical imsight integrates the relevant timing of life. It gives us eyes to SEE the new and to know when and where. It allows us to orient ourselves in time and atmosphere and to unlock what is closed. Lightfilled Kingdom Eyes bring heaven to earth, and order to disorder. Right SEEING is a creative force that brings about spiritual substance.
Lord, that we would SEE and understand the certainty of our purpose and comprehend the scope and intensity of belonging to the greater wholeness which is Your Body.
How are we going to market our Light?
The biggest problem with evangelism is that people haven't really seen just how bright the light bulb could be! If they could see us in-Christ and Christ-in-us, then all our hopes to share this great Light with others would automatically happen!
Jesus is the only Light -- His eyes are flames of fire (Rev. 1:13, 14), His feet like burnished brass. His loins appear as the brightness of fire upward and downward. It is the flame of His light that provides the actuality of life and breath to every human being. It is His light that keeps us from growing cold.
Why we don't really need to make an effort to shine. It's not a chore that we have to do! It's an enLIGHTened KNOWING. We apprehend the Truth that God supplies the light, the power, the ability for us to shine. As we cloth ourselves with His likeness (the armor of light), we press forward past the darkness as a forceful influence.