The Open Door Movement is about seeing Jesus in everyday places. Initially, I always said I wanted to remember specific people in each state and what God did through them. I got so caught up in always trying to find the story in other people that I was totally caught off guard when it would turn out that “I” would be one of those people God wanted me to remember during a visit to the ideal state of Maine.
On a trip like this, it’s easy to get caught up in “ministry”: who is the person we are supposed to meet today? What should we be on the lookout for today? What do we have to give away that someone may need today? But you know, in order to give out, you need to receive first.
We made a day trek up to Maine and stopped in a smaller town called York. We had heard there was an incredible lighthouse out there so that alone warranted a visit. Upon arriving, I was in one of those places where I knew I wasn’t fully checked in and wasn’t receiving the love I needed to receive from God in order to pour out. Admitting my need to be refueled, I sat myself down on the rocks and asked Jesus to speak to me and give me a reminder of who I am.
I asked Him to tell me that He sees me.
There stood the lighthouse.
I find a lot of hope in when Jesus says in John 8:12 “I am the Light of the world”. And then, in Matthew 6:14 He says to the disciples, “You are the light of the world”.
Jesus passes the torch to US to be light in the world!
One of things He has spoken to me about lighthouses has been how they are beacons in the night guiding lost ships at sea back home. That’s what I want to be. I don’t want to be ashamed of my light. I want to lead them to a safe harbor, guiding them home with a light that just IS. Knowing its identity, the lighthouse simply lives out its purpose and shines.
So on this particular day, those similar words came back to me but THEN God spoke something new.
Here’s what He showed me about the foundation:
Foundation #1: The Water – “The Love of God”
Tracing the lighthouse foundation to the very bottom: it rests in the water. I’ve always interpreted water as God’s love. The very core of our identity needs to be FOUND in God’s love for us. 1 John 4:19 says “We love because he first loved us.” Once we were lost and, while we were still sinners, He died for us.
HE FOUND US!
Before we can EVER love another in any capacity to the fullest, we can only do it when we know we were BORN TO BE LOVED by Him.
Foundation #2: The Rock – “Christ the Rock of our Salvation”
Stretching out of the water was the rocky island. This strong, sturdy, and unshakable base which the lighthouse would eventually come to stand upon. The “Rock” represents Jesus “the rock of our salvation”. Psalm 62:6 says:
“Truly he is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will NOT BE SHAKEN.”
God’s love sent His Son, Jesus, to die on the cross for the sins of the whole world. He did this so we may be forgiven and have communion with Him! It wasn’t simply so we can go to heaven someday but so that we could experience heaven made manifest on earth TODAY.
In Jesus, we have hope of a new life.
In Jesus, we have freedom from who we once were.
In Jesus, we have a new joy through all storms we may go through.
When He is our foundation, we will not be shaken!
Foundation #3: The Grass – “Holy Spirit: the roots and the fruit”
On top of the rock sprouted grass, bushes, and little trees. This is the fruit that is produced when our roots are firmly planted in Jesus. Jesus said in John 15:5:
“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit, apart from me you can do nothing…If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. (v.7)”
When we have Jesus, He gave us Holy Spirit as a deposit of what was to come (2 Cor 1:22). And as we seek the face of Jesus and choose to walk by the Spirit, we are assured that fruit will be produced in our lives.
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Gal. 5:22-23).”
And finally: The Lighthouse.
Being found by the love of God, rooted in Jesus, flourishing in the fruit that comes from walking in the Spirit: NOW comes the commissioning! Standing firm in the identity that comes from the one who has the best plan to prosper and not harm, we are sent out into the world to make disciples. We are called the light of the world: “a city on a hill that cannot be hidden“ (Matt 5:14). So let your light shine so others may discover the Father’s love for them!
The lighthouse fulfills its purpose in doing exactly what the Creator has called it to do: bringing lost ships home by SIMPLY SHINING IT’S LIGHT.
But there was one last thing Jesus spoke to me on that hill. Beside the lighthouse, there was a nice big house that was near completion. That’s when God addressed my heart. He taught me about provision. He knows what matters to me and what endlessly concerns me. But with that house under construction, He simply smiled and assured me that my wants and desires matter to Him. And as I stand firm in my foundation, and continue to obey Him as He has called, He is preparing me to be in a place to finally receive the desires of my heart.
“Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart”
I’ve always found the most comforting verse for me and my anxious heart can be found in Matt 6:33 amongst the “Do Not Worry” message Jesus shared. He encourages us, in the midst of any worry or concern we may have for our lives, to, “Seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness and ALL these things will be given to you as well.”
Get lost in Jesus, not in your problems or your worries. Get lost in who you are in Him and what He has called you to do, THEN He’s got everything else covered in it’s proper time.
When I look back on Maine, I can only remember God’s promises for me. Yeah, there were a few strangers we met and there was also that lobster roll I ate… But I recall Jesus speaking to my anxious heart, reminding me of my calling, and reassuring me that my heart’s desires matter to Him.
He has always got us covered and knows what we need and WHEN we need it. Everything has a specific time and purpose to it. Right now, I’m meant to be lost in the love of God, rooted in Christ, flourishing with fruit of the Spirit, and to shine my light.
Get lost in Him, and you will be FOUND.
So stand firm in that FOUNDation and let your light shine.