Born in Tuscumbia, Alabama in 1880, Helen Keller became an international citizen who conquered her disabilities of blindness and deafness brought on by a sudden illness at nineteen months old. In her 88 years she visited 35 countries on five continents and met with world leaders, sharing her concern for disabled citizens in their countries. In one speech, Helen Keller spoke of the joy that life gave her. She was thankful for the faculties and abilities that she possessed and stated that the most productive pleasures she had were curiosity and imagination. Keller also spoke of the joy of service and the happiness that came from doing things for others. All of this even though she lived in total darkness and silence. Can you pause and try to imagine what that would be like?
There is an even greater darkness that Paul speaks to in Ephesians 5 because just like us, the Gentiles or new believers were living in a culture full of darkness, immorality, covetousness and idolatry.
Paul says in Ephesians 5:7-8, Therefore do not be partakers with them; for you were formerly darkness, but now you are Light in the Lord; walk as children of the Light. The word walk means live life but also indicates progress and relates to growth; it’s taking steps toward maturity. Verse 9 says the fruit of the Light consists in all goodness and righteousness and truth. The Bible is clear light comes from God, the Father of the heavenly lights (James 1:17).
1 John 1:5 states God is light; in him there is no darkness at all. Note that we are not told that God is a light but that He IS light. Jesus, the sinless Son of God, is the “true light” and we are the reflection as God’s precious children. In Ephesians 5:11 we are told not to participate in deeds of darkness but instead expose them, and vs. 13 … all things become visible when they are exposed by the light. Paul was instructing them (and us) not to be deceived, but to walk wisely, making the most of their (our) time.
Helen Keller sought to bring people with disabilities, including the blind and deaf, to the forefront and out of the shadows of society. Her own life proved there was purpose for everyone. As Jesus followers, our purpose is to be the light in our family, workplace, community and even to the world.
LIVE THE STORY: Meditate on Ephesians 5:9-10 today and ask the Lord to show you (give discernment) what is pleasing to him. Then ask him for an opportunity to be a light in the darkness in someone’s life this week.