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Day 27 / 27.07.23 / Pastor Chua Seng Lee, Senior Pastor, Bethesda Bedok Tampines Church

Day 27: Light for these dark times

Isaiah 60:1-3 “Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you. See, darkness covers the earth and thick darkness is over the peoples, but the Lord rises upon you and his glory appears over you. Nations will come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your dawn.”

Isaiah 60 tells us about deep darkness that is covering the people but it also says that the light will come. In other words, the worst of times can also be the best of times. 

The youth in SG are especially vulnerable to this darkness. Mental health problems are becoming increasingly common. Many of them are suffering in pain, mentally and emotionally. This includes even the youth in our own local church. 

A report published in 2022 noted that mental health conditions were the most commonly associated indicator of ill health among children and youth aged 10 to 19 years. And the research for this report was done even before the pandemic. We have every reason to believe that the situation now is even worse. But the best help for them is not more counselling or more medicine, even though this can be helpful for some.

The best help in the darkness is Jesus. 

Jesus is the light, the life and the love for our soul. John 1:5 reminds us that Jesus is the light that will shine and pierce through the darkness and the darkness has not and will not overcome it. 

Jesus can bring understanding to their darkness. And also in John 1:4, Jesus is the life that will restore their deadness, life that is the light of all mankind. Jesus can bring life and hope in our darkness. 

John 15:9: “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love.” 

Jesus is the love that will heal our souls. Jesus can and wants to heal our wounded souls. Our youths don’t need more advice, more things to do like pray more, worship more, read your Bible more. They need more of Jesus. 

We need to help our young people as well as the pre-believers to know Jesus more, to see Jesus more.

The best help in the darkness is Jesus. 

How can they see more of Jesus? Through the body of Christ, through you and I. Our youths need you and I to reflect more of Jesus to them so that the kindness of God manifested through us can help them experience healing that brings about transformation. 

How can we reflect more of Jesus? We need to behold Jesus more. Therefore we need to humble ourselves, we need to lay hold of Jesus. We need to abide in Jesus more. We need to pray like never before. Why? Because when we work, we work. But when we pray, God works. So that when we reach out to the youths and we listen to them, when we speak to them, we will do so with the guidance of God in the likeness of God. 

Church, let’s arise and shine and allow the Lord to shine His light through us to touch the lost, the least, the lonely among us. Let’s turn this darkness or mental problems into the glorious light of opportunity to reveal Jesus to all. 

And to our young people, our youth out there, please forgive us if we have not represented Jesus well. Do know that Jesus loves you deeply and He wants you to know that. Let us pray: 

Jesus, may you come and tutor us to behold You, to reflect more of You, so that the world can see more of Jesus, so that the young people can experience more of Jesus, so that they can experience the healing that only You can bring. 

Hear our prayer, Lord, for we pray this together, in Jesus’ name, Amen.

Download the PDF version of today’s devotional here.

/ Reflect
  • How does the truth of Jesus being the light and life give you hope in the darkness?
  • What does the Bible mean when it exhorts us to shine Jesus’ light? 
  • What are some practical ways to reflect more of Jesus’ light to the youth in your life?
/ Pray
  • Pray for the lost and the lonely, that God might protect their thoughts from despair and hopelessness. Ask for the light of the Holy Spirit to pierce through their darkness and uplift their downcast spirit. Pray for them to find encouragement and life-giving hope in grounding their identity in Christ. 
  • Pray today for the youth you know, that they may be overwhelmed by God’s grace and empowered by the Spirit. Ask that they perceive life in His Word and desire to align their lives with His salvation hope. Pray that, as their hearts turn to witness and evangelism, they might be like arrows in the hand of the warrior (Psalm 127:4).
  • Pray to be a good example to the youth in your life – in character, conversation, spirit, faith and purity.