Throughout history, ports and harbors created distinct points of light near their shores to help guide incoming ships safely onto shore, while avoiding rocks, reefs and cliffs. As technology improved, so did these points of light. From using fire on hilltops to fire on platforms and eventually to the first lighthouse, ports and harbors were always looking for new ways to communicate with incoming ships. They were also looking for ways to expand the reach of the light.
These sources of light were extremely essential to sailors out on the open sea. Many times, blankets of fog would settle over the ocean making it near impossible for ships to sea anything, let alone an approaching shoreline. Ships became dependent on being able to see the light from a lighthouse stretching its arms of safety out to them. Sailors knew if they straightened their ships according to the lighthouse, the light would guide them home.
While on my way home from the gym last night, a light fog had settled over the southern half of the city. As I looked out into the dark sky, to my surprise, I saw a light, but seconds later it was gone. A few moments passed and the light was back. As I continued to stare, I noticed it was going around in a circle. Now considering I do not live anywhere near a coastline, I knew there could not be any lighthouses near by, but nevertheless, I was seeing a light from a lighthouse.
As I’m staring at this in amazement, the song switches on the radio to You Lift Me Up by Josh Groban. Thinking of the purposes of a lighthouse, they were created to help sailors avoid mountains (or cliffs). They were created to help them navigate through stormy and foggy seas. They were created to help ships be stronger when the sailors could see their light. What better song could describe the lighthouse I was witnessing? What better song to help God speak to me?
“You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong, when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up… To more than I can be.”
Tears streaming down my cheeks, I pulled over to the side of the road, looked up at the sky and said, “God, I hear you. I see your sign. Guide me home.” There was no other way to explain what I was seeing or what I was hearing. God was showing me a light from a lighthouse and He was telling me to follow Him. God was telling me to trust His light and He alone would guide me home.
This week I am leaving to go on a missions trip with a group of people from my church. We are going down to South Padre Island, Texas for spring break on a missions trip called Beach Reach. Beach Reach has been going on for over 30 years and this will be the ninth year my church heads down to Texas. It is a trip designed to help serve spring breakers and partiers on the island and show them what God’s love is all about by serving them.
With that being said, I am extremely uncomfortable in crowds. I have a fear of getting lost in a crowd or taken by someone I do not know. I have had this fear for most of my life, but as the trip nears, my anxiety around it has heightened in awareness. I have been praying for strength to overcome this fear and help to walk through it. I know God is going to be on the trip with me, He is never going to leave my side, but for some apparent reason, I could not shake this fear.
Last night when I saw the light from what appeared to be a lighthouse, I knew it was God answering my prayers. He was telling me to follow Him and come home. He was telling me I may not know the waters I am going to tread while on this trip, but He does. He was telling me I may not know where the harbor is that I am going to dock at, but He does. Most of all, He was showing me that if I just follow the light, His light, from His lighthouse, He will guide me around the rocks, through the reefs and straight into harbor with Him. He will bring me home safely, but only through Him.
In the third section of the book of Isaiah, God’s people have returned from being exiled in the desert for 40 years. They have reclaimed the land promised to them and were looking forward to the bright, great future that had been promised to them as well; yet they were not seeing it. In Chapter 60, God’s people are reminded of His power and greatness. They are reminded of God’s purpose for their lives, and what He had already done for them in the past. Isaiah 60:19 states,
“The sun will no more be your light by day, nor will the brightness of the moon shine on you, for the LORD will be your everlasting light, and your God will be your glory.”
This verse speaks exactly what God was speaking to me last night. Isaiah 60:19 is stating God is the everlasting light of your life. You do not need the sun in the day time nor the moon in the night to guide your path, instead you need God to light your way. What truth this is to my heart.
God is telling me through this verse, and through His sign last night, that no matter what, He will always be the light in my life. Nevertheless, I have to make the choice to follow Him, to follow the light set before me. I have to make the choice to not become fearful when I cannot see everything in the waters ahead. I have to make the choice to trust Him and His great purpose for my life. Most of all, I have to make the choice to let God guide my path in life, to let Him be the stronghold in my life.
“The LORD is my light and my salvation—whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life—of whom shall I be afraid?” – Psalm 27:1