Lighthouse

Image Source: Joshua Hibbert

Today's post follows on from my previous post, Leave A Light On.

In his song with the same title, Tom Walker sings about leaving the light on for his drug-addict friend as a constant reminder that he will always be welcomed home. Here are the lyrics again:


If you look into the distance, there's a house up on the hill
Guidin' like a lighthouse
To a place where you'll be safe to feel our grace
'Cause we've all made mistakes
If you've lost your way…

I will leave the light on
I will leave the light on
I will leave the light on
I will leave the light on


In my last post, I shared that God uses a similar approach to us, that no-matter how far we stray, God will always leave the light on for us as a constant reminder that we will welcome be welcomed home into God's open, loving arms.

So this got me thinking... what is the church's role in all of this?

While God is the one who accepts us and welcomes us home just as we are, I believe that it is the church's responsibility to be the guiding lighthouse that directs broken people into God's loving arms.

Lighthouses are designed in such a way that even on the darkest, stormy nights, their guiding light can be seen from far away.

In a world that is often in figurative darkness and stormy seas, is the church being an effective lighthouse, pointing broken and hopeless people to the safe-shores of Jesus' loving embrace?

Unfortunately, in today's world, many churches are indistinguishable from the world around them. I believe that it is essential we take our call to point people to God seriously, so that ultimately Jesus and the prophet Isaiah's words will be realized:

"The people living in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death, a light has dawned."
- Matthew 4:16 (NIV)

I would like to therefore offer alternative lyrics to Tom Watson's song that would better display the purpose of the church as a lighthouse to the world...

If you look into the distance, there's a church up on the hill
Guidin' like a lighthouse
To a place where you'll be safe to feel God's grace
'Cause we've all made mistakes
If you've lost your way…

God will leave the light on
God will leave the light on
God will leave the light on
God will leave the light on

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