Herald Journal Columns
August 21, 2006, Herald Journal

Shining in the darkest places

By PAM FIECKE

A group of people had gotten together for Bible study one morning.

As the study went on, the leader walked over to the bright light of an open window to look out and to inhale some fresh air. He gently closed the window as he saw, at a distance, dark clouds and possibly, rain coming his way.

As he turned around, he asked if there were any last-minute questions or concerns, as their class was just about to come to an end.

A man cleared his throat, stood up, and replied, “I have a question for you. I have always wondered about this. I want to know, what is the meaning of life?”

Everyone in attendance laughed and stirred to leave.

However, the leader held up his hand to ask for silence and then responded, “I will answer your question.”

He took his wallet out of his pocket and removed a small mirror about the size of a quarter. Then he explained, “One day, while going for a walk on a gravel road out my way, I came across a mirror that was broken in many pieces.

“I searched for all the broken pieces and tried to put them together, but it was not possible, so I kept the largest piece. By scratching it on a stone, I managed to make it round again.

“I began to play with it as a toy and became fascinated by the fact that I could reflect light into dark, inaccessible places that I could find.

“I kept the little mirror in my billfold. As I grew up, I would take it out at idle moments and continue the challenge of the game. As I became a man, I grew to understand that this was not just a child’s game, but a metaphor of what I could do with my life.

“I came to understand that I was the light, or the source of the light, of the world. I realized that in inconvenient times, I needed to be of truth, of understanding, of knowledge, regardless how shattered the pieces were or the broken heart was.

“I needed to shine and reflect in many dark places of this world. Perhaps others, seeing it happen, would do likewise.”

The leader spoke louder. “This is what I am about. This is the meaning of my life. Do we reflect the light of Christ into the darkness of other people’s lives?

“It gives people hope when they feel completely lost and desperate and have nowhere else to turn. It helped me believe in myself when I felt hopeless, and to continue my journey, in the arms of the Lord.

In doing so - we will make the world a better place. This, to me, is the meaning of life.”


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