I have spent the majority of my 'Christian' life hiding my faith, being cautious or surface level with those around me, even those I went to church with so as not to get hurt; for fear that my sins would be evident and I would be judged. As Christ and the Holy Spirit continue to mold & fill me, the more I have realized that my foundation is Christ and He was calling me to be something... Transparent.
"Transparent" is defined as "having the property of transmitting rays of light through its substance so that bodies situated beyond or behind can be distinctly seen. Easily seen through, recognized, or detected" (Dictionary.com).
To be direct, God & Jesus Christ is The Light... 1 John 1:5-9 "This is the message we heard from Jesus and now declare to you: God is light, and there is no darkness in him at all. So we are lying if we say we have fellowship with God but go on living in spiritual darkness; we are not practicing the truth. But if we are living in the light, as God is in the light, then we have fellowship with each other, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, cleanses us from all sin. If we claim we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and not living in truth. But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness." By inviting Christ into your heart, into your life, you now posses "The Light." John 8:12, "... you will have the light..." Hence salvation & the gospel.
More support: John 12:46.
There are some phrases I'd like to focus on within this definition that I've found interesting as 'Transparent' has been coming up in my life:
Definition & Matthew 5:14-16
*"transmitting rays of light, through its substance..." This is our call; to gain 'substance' or spiritual growth and maturity to allow 'light, The Light' to shine through us, in our being, in our character, actions, words, everything... SUBSTANCE.
*"so that bodies situated beyond or behind can be distinctly seen." This one obviously is a definition but the parallels that I enjoy is that the purpose of being transparent is not only to allow Light to be the transmitter, but what it displays is our substance which is Christ WITHIN and that is should be 'distinctly seen!' v. 14 (*note: I do not think Christ is behind, or am implying that I am in front of Christ, as the definition might suggest)
In v.15 & 16, of Matthew 14, the last word in my translation, NLT is "house." v.15. I am relating this to ourselves, the church, and the body of Christ; which we are as a community & followers of Christ. Then in v.16 it says "... shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father."
Is your life effective in the furthering of God's Kingdom? "Have you affected the conversion of others?" -Pastor James MacDonald.
*To those who I worship with here, near, and far...
"As we continue to seek community with one another, (John 17:20-23), transparency has to begin somewhere, to build upon the depths & greater calling of being one body in Christ and getting to better understand one another. Fearful yes; for ridicule and judgement are possible outcomes, but our identity should be found in Christ alone. Therefore making the transparent life a necessary one for the pursuit of spiritual maturity as we prayerfully ask the Lord to protect our hearts, our souls, our spirits."
Psalm 119:114-117 (NLT).
*A wonderful song, from one of my favorite female worship artists, and actually what sparked this call of "Being a light"...
(For the record, I am not copying my lil sister's blog, I'd like to note that I actually sent her this video first... in love, haha)
"Heavenly Father, thank You for Your continuous fill in my life. For being my refuge and strength, and allowing me to establish my identity in You. For Your true love, let my life resemble my gratitude, to the best of my human capabilities. May Your Holy Spirit continue to poor through me into this world that I am in. Let those who know me and those who don't always see Your Light within me, as I continue to pursue holiness and strive to exemplify the life of Your son, Jesus Christ until You call me home. In Your mighty and loving name I pray...