Scripture: Matthew 5:13-20
Observation: Jesus tells his disciples that they are salt and light in this world, representatives of him. He also states that he has come to accomplish the law, written by the prophets and Moses. He calls them to obey the commandments.
Application: Have you ever noticed how much we love trying to figure out which parent a child looks like? Admittedly, my husband and I spend a lot of time talking about who our son looks like more – me or him. (Consensus: I think he looks like me when he’s happy and smiley and like my husband when he’s fussy and giving us attitude. I promise I’m not subjective at all…)
We’re all on a continuous quest to find traces of ourselves in our kids because they’re fully and completely made from the two of us. Every fiber of their being, every strand of their DNA, comes from ours. Every part of them comes from a part of us. They are a walking representative of who we are as their parents.
When we put our faith in Jesus, we’re given new life. I love how Paul puts it in Ephesians 4:
“Since you have heard about Jesus and have learned the truth that comes from him, throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of life, which is corrupted by lust and deception. Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy.” (Ephesians 4:21-24)
We are made new. Just like my son is a walking representation of me, we are walking representations of our Father in heaven after putting our faith in his son, Jesus.
So, how do we represent our Father well? Here’s what Jesus says: we are salt and light – we bring flavor (joy and positivity) to life, and we bring light to a world full of darkness. When we represent our Father well, we show the world how to live with a hope and faith that transcends our circumstances and our own strength.
“In the same way let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.” (v. 16)
We don’t perform good deeds so that our Father will love us; we perform good deeds to show that we love our Father.
Are we being salt and light, bringing glory to our Father in our behaviors, attitudes, and actions? What area of our lives isn’t radiating God’s DNA – his love, his mercy, his generosity, his holiness? Let’s bring that to God today, asking him to invade the spaces of our lives where we’re not walking representatives of him.
Prayer: God, thank you for making us your children through the death and resurrection of your son, Jesus. I pray we can represent you well, pushing aside our own thoughts or feelings and embracing the way you call us to walk. Make us salt and light in every environment. Amen.