This verse is a study in darkness and light…happiness and unhappiness…hope and ruin. Especially this year as the days have become shorter and shorter I think we all have been suffering from Seasonal Affective Disorder. And so we decorate for Christmas…dispelling the darkness with twinkling lights, shining ornaments, and glowing candles. But the world around us needs more than to see superficial Christmas decorations…they need the light of Jesus Christ. When Jesus said, “Follow Me.” it meant so much more than just following Him. It starts with believing and trusting in His death and resurrection…then obeying, learning, and acting according to His example…and finally, it’s in abiding in His fellowship and sharing in His sufferings through self-denial. That’s how we can “shine” in the darkness around us…or as Matthew 5:16 tells us, “In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds, and praise your Father in heaven.” This darkest part of the year will be for many a very unhappy time. They have lost loved ones, jobs, and hope. So as you follow Jesus you can be that light that brings them promise. For it is written, “The path of righteousness is like the first gleam of dawn, shining ever brighter till the full light of day.” (Proverbs 4:18) Be that light to someone today.