5 Ways to Be a Light in the Midst of Darkness
I attend a college where there is a very small Christian community that whole-heartedly dives into their relationship with the Lord. It can be isolating to attend Delight, CRU, Bible study, and church with the same few people. The community is strong, but it is almost as if I am hiding from the “darkness” that is my fellow non-Christian peers. And everyone knows that you cannot be a light if you avoid the darkness.
“Then Jesus told them, ‘You are going to have the light just a little while longer. Walk while you have the light, before darkness overtakes you. Whoever walks in the dark does not know where they are going. Believe in the light while you have the light, so that you may become children of light.’ When he had finished speaking, Jesus left and hid himself from them.” John 12:35-36 NIV
If we want to spread the love of Jesus, we must perform a balancing act between fellowship and stewardship.
Fellowship is the friendship between believers. In order to be a light, we must have light poured into us. We need to build community with other people pursuing their relationships with God. There is so much power in building unity and “training” together to fight the spiritual battle that is going on. Fellowship allows us to pray for one another and learn more about Jesus through listening and interacting. We become a light by having wisdom and love poured into us constantly.
Stewardship is the friendship between believers and non-believers. In order to illuminate the darkness, we must go into the darkness. We cannot share the gospel if we are too afraid to make meaningful connections with non-believers. Jesus is everywhere. He is in places where disciples worship Him without fear, and He is in places where there is so much brokenness. He calls us to go to both places.
“The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles. The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.” Psalm 34:17-18 NIV
So how do we, as Christian women in college, maintain this balance between fellowship and stewardship?
Many of you have probably had to find a new church home due to moving away for college. This can be stressful! However, I got some great advice from a mentor before leaving. She said to not “shop” for a church. You don’t want to go to a million different places and not commit to any because it isn’t exactly what you are looking for. None of them are going to be your church from home, so don’t try to find it. Know your values and what kind of community will help you become closer to the Lord. Stay where He is leading you and serve. If you are serving in a church, you are less likely to stray from Him.
Invite friends who aren’t Christ-followers to go with you. The worst they can say is no. There is something at church that is for everyone. If your friend likes singing, then they might enjoy worshipping; if they like working with kids, then they can help volunteer with you in the nursery. Many people are intimidated by the church atmosphere, but if you invite them knowing that there are aspects they will enjoy, then that opens a door for you to witness to them.
Continue building Christ-centered relationships with fellow women on campus. Delight is such a powerful tool to grow alongside one another and have fun at the same time!
Invite non-believers to Delight! The stories are relevant to every woman in this stage of life. They may find comfort in seeing a community that is uplifting and encouraging. Once they realize that the foundation is Jesus, then they might become more open to the possibly of learning more about Him. (P.S. My Delight chapter had Friendsgiving last fall, and it was a great opportunity to invite new people because who doesn’t like food?!)
3. Verse Cards
I ordered the most beautiful verse cards from The Daily Grace Co. last semester. They had encouraging verses on them to serve as daily reminders. I decided to write personalized notes to some of my friends in Delight that lived in my dorm hall, and slipped them underneath their doors. It was a great way to encourage and remind them how loved they are.
The week before finals, Delight and CRU both had events going on as a way to uplift everyone during “dead week”. I decided to invite a lot of the girls in my hall who didn’t go to Delight. I used these verse cards as an invitation. When the events came along, none of them showed up. It was disappointing, but that doesn’t mean that I should stop inviting them to things. Maybe the cards impacted them in a different way. Maybe that enticed them to look more into who this Jesus fella was; maybe the girls prayed for the first time in a long time after seeing the Word delivered to them. Who knows what impact those cards made? The possibility of an impact is what is important.
Prayer is a powerful tool. When you pray, you are at the throne of Lord and He listens to you. The King of all kings is listening to you! How could we not take this golden opportunity and run with it?
In my senior year of high school, I remember being so frustrated with my small group leaders. They took us to the mall and told us to go find people to pray with. I was mortified! I didn’t want to seem like one of those pushy-Christians who shoves verses down everyone’s throats. I didn’t want to ruin the possibility of them having a relationship with Jesus because they thought I was crazy, and didn’t want to be like me. As it turns out, my mentors were right…as always. I ended up praying with a stranger about something that both of us needed. It was eye-opening. Now imagine praying with a close-friend who isn’t a believer. You can show them how God used that prayer in their life. That might be what it takes to open a door for them to begin pursuing the Lord.
“When they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were gathered together. They were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and they spoke the word of God with boldness.” Acts 4:31 NIV
5. Good Example
Think about WWJD (What Would Jesus Do) in every single situation.
In order to be the salt of the Earth, you must preserve your campus from evilness and enhance your campus by being a positive example.
“You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.” Matthew 5:13 NIV
If you strive to illuminate the darkness, then you must be lit up by Christian friends and then be able to use that enhanced light to guide non-Christian friends. It is a bit of a balancing act, but if you can do it (which I know you can!) then you’ll bring glory to God and His Kingdom.
“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” Matthew 5:14-16 NIV
Alex // @alex_is_baker
Hello! My name is Alex and I'm so excited to be a part of this ministry. I am a freshman at Hanover College in Indiana. I love writing, photography, and spending time with my family. I am a leader of CRU at Hanover and will be a Delight leader next fall as well. I plan on building His kingdom further by engaging in missions trips in the future. I am so grateful to be able to use my love of writing and traveling in order to serve some incredible women and people all over the world.