This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all. If we claim to have fellowship with him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live out the truth. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin. (1 John 1:5-7)
This month we are going to focus on what it means to “Walk in the Light”. It seems like one of those phrases that we hear so often, and honestly may say, but not really understand what it means. Hopefully this month you’ll understand it a little more clearly and will apply it to your daily lives.
What does it mean to “walk in the light”? It seems like a somewhat vague phrase. From the Greek, the word “walk” is peripateo. It’s used in the New Testament almost 100 times. It’s actually two words combined together to form a new word. The first word “peri” means around and expresses the idea of encircling. The word “pateo” means to walk, denoting the movement of one’s feet. When you combine them together, it gives the impression of continually walking around in a general area. Think of it as a person who walks a specific path so habitually, that they would be able to do it just as gracefully if they had lost their ability to see.
In the time when the New Testament was written, the word peripateo was often used to denote the idea of strolling, or taking a leisurely walk. When you think of a leisurely walk, you think of someone who is comfortable, they’re not anxious or frustrated, they’re at peace.
How do we continually stroll with God? We choose to spend time with Him. We purposefully set aside time to be alone with our Savior. To pray. To listen. To sit at His feet. We use God’s Word as our guidebook, as our map for daily living. When something unexpected strikes, we go to Him for peace, protection and heavenly wisdom.
When someone spends large amounts of time with someone else, they start to adopt some of their traits. If you continually spend time with someone who is negative, you start to take on some of their negative traits. If you spend time with someone who continually uses inappropriate language, you start to spew profanities. But on the converse, if you spend time with someone who is generous, you start to be more generous. When you spend time with someone who has been blessed with patience, you become more patient. When you start to spend time daily with our Heavenly Father, you start to model who He is.
In the beginning of the scripture referenced above, it also says that “God is light; in Him there is no darkness at all.” There are numerous references and metaphors for God being light in scripture with many different meanings, but for this time we are going to put it simply and say that just as light shows people where to walk when it is dark, so God shows the way we are to walk by lighting our path. Psalm 36: 9 reads “…in your light we see light.”
If we were to combine these two thoughts together, we could surmise that God’s Holy Word is telling us that if we continually and habitually stroll in our Savior’s presence, our path will be illuminated. We will be blessed with seeing where our Heavenly Father directs and leads. Simply put… when we walk in the light we become imitators of God’s character.
You are our great and might Father! Your goodness and holiness is evident in our world! You are to be praised for Your beautiful creation. We praise You for Your sacrifice for us on that barren hill. You are to be praised for the empty tomb! All praise to You Father! We confess that we don’t walk with you when we know we should. We often choose comfort or convenience over community with You. Show us what to shed that takes our hearts away from You. Reveal to each one of us those things that steal our time and attention from You. Thank you for Your Holy Word and how it refreshes our soul. We are thankful that Your Word does not return void. May it be used for us to grow closer to You TODAY and to illuminate our path. Lord, we boldly ask that as we spend time with You, that You would allow us to adopt Your holy traits. We praise You and ask these things in Your holy name,