DayBreaks for 08/26/19: North Star People
NOTE: Galen is on vacation for the next couple weeks and may not respond to any comments until he returns on 9/9/19.
From the DayBreaks archive, August 2009:
Those who are wise will shine like the brightness of the heavens, and those who lead many to righteousness, like the stars for ever and ever. – DANIEL 12:3
Due north in the sky is where you can find the star, Polaris. Perhaps you know it by its more common name: the North Star. For thousands of years now, when sailors or even astronauts are in need of directions or when they are lost, the first thing they do (assuming they don’t have GPS!) is to look for the North Star. Once they’ve found it, it is possible for them to figure out where they are and how to get back on track.
Surprisingly, the North Star (Polaris) is not the brightest object in the sky – in fact, it’s rather dim. It’s slightly green (so I’m told). Because it is at the tip of the very northern axis in the celestial view from earth, it doesn’t shift position throughout the night – it doesn’t move – it stays put. It isn’t easy to find, but anyone can learn to find it. A typical response by those who are shown where it is for the first time is to remark, rather surprisedly, “Huh. I always thought it would be brighter than that.”
The point is this: we can be like the North Star to other people. Shocking? Perhaps, but here’s what Paul had to say about it in Philippians 2:14-16: Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe as you hold out the word of life–in order that I may boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor for nothing. (NIV) There are several things worth noting about this verse:
FIRST: it is children of God that shine like stars in the universe – not just the “greats” like Peter, Paul, Mary, Esther and their ilk. Every child of God can and should be shining like the northern star.
SECOND: it is in the dark world, a “crooked and depraved generation” that we are to shine. We’re not supposed to wait until all is bright and airy – after all, can you see the stars when the sun is shining in its power? Of course not! It takes darkness for the stars (other than our sun) to be seen. The day will come when we won’t shine – because the Son will be all the illumination that is needed when he appears. But since the passage says we shine in a depraved generation – this verse isn’t talking about when we get to heaven or in eternity. It is talking about shining NOW.
THIRD: how is it that we shine? By the way we “hold out the word of life.” That’s how we shine. We hold out the Word of life by believing it, holding it out like we would a lantern or brilliant spotlight. We hold it out so that others can grasp it. We hold it out so that others can see by it and distinguish between the unfruitful works of darkness and the Light of the World that has come so that no one need stumble and fall again.
FOURTH: we can be like the north star in that we never change position. We continually hold out the word of life…no matter what is going on in our lives. Circumstances won’t change us…we should be stationary, steadfast. As the words to the old song, O Thou Fount of Every Blessing put is, “Praise the mount, I’m fixed upon it, mount of Thy redeeming love!” Fixed. Solid. Immovable. The rest of the world may spin off into frenzied oblivion – the children of God won’t.
Right now, you are faced with a decision about how you’ll live this day. You may be at work, college, high school – some other school – it matters not. Wherever you are, if you are His child, you can shine like the north star and hold out the Word of Life to those all around you this day. The question is: will you do it?
PRAYER: Let us shine to this depraved generation, Lord! Let us take the Word of Life into our hearts and hands and minds and hold it out to a world dying in the darkness. Fix us as a star in the sky for all to see Your glory! In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Copyright by 2019 by Galen C. Dalrymple. ><}}}”>