“In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” (Matt. 5:16 NIV)
It was a Summer evening almost 30 years ago. I was rocking my baby boy in my arms and when he fell asleep I put him gently down into his crib for the night. My wife worn out from a long day of work was half napping and half watching TV in the living room. Not caring for the show I poured myself a glass of iced tea in the kitchen, took a lawn chair off our porch, and walked into the front yard to gaze at the stars.
As soon as I stepped onto the yard I heard the sweet sound of laughter drifting through the air. On the hill next to our house the neighbor’s children were chasing fireflies, hoping to catch one in a mason jar. I sat down in my chair and watched them for awhile. As fast as they ran, though, they couldn’t seem to catch the slow moving lightning bugs. Finally, exhausted they both sat down in the grass and just watched the little guys flying through the air, blinking their lights on and off. I sipped my tea and joined them in their awe and appreciation. It felt so good getting to see one of God’s many miracles lighting up my front yard on a warm, Summer night. It made me feel a bit closer to the Divine and a part of something far greater than myself.
Over the years since then I have appreciated and enjoyed all of the glorious light in this world. I have taken it into my heart and welcomed it into my soul. I have found it in nature, books, music, animals, prayer, and most of all in the lives of those around me. I have never tried to catch this light, however. I have learned that true light and true love must come from within. It must flow freely between us and can’t be captured in a jar.
The next time you see some fireflies then, take a seat and enjoy their light. Let them remind you to shine your own light as well. Let them remind you to fill your life with the brightness of your love. Let them remind you that you too are one of God’s miracles in this world.
By: Joseph J. Mazzella