The Name That Requires a Response

154,170 is a really big number, do you want to know what it represents?  154,170 is the number of titles that came up on Amazon when I typed “self help”.  There were over 400,000 titles that came up when I searched “psychology”.  That is over half a million titles offering wisdom focused on shining a light into the dark places within us.

Did you know that when people are lost they tend to go faster?  This must be why so many men I know hurry when they are in the shopping mall.  When I ask people how they are doing, two of the top answers I receive are “busy” and “tired”.  Is it possible that people are moving so fast because they feel so lost?  Is it possible we have over half a million books giving some kind of wisdom because so many people are feeling so lost?

“The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of deep darkness a light has dawned.”  Isaiah 9:2

These words are how the Bible described the world Jesus entered 2000 years ago that first Christmas.  The darkness of the time was oppressive and the people were trapped by the darkness, lived in the darkness and participated in the darkness.  If walking in darkness was not enough description for us, it says they “lived in a land of deep darkness.”

Darkness is disorienting to people.  Darkness has a unique ability to send confusion our way.   When darkness comes, fear is empowered.  Darkness makes problems seem bigger, hope seem smaller and help seem further away.  Darkness gives our enemies permission to approach without detection and paralyzes our responses.  If Amazon was around during the time of Jesus, I am sure there would have been over half a million books trying to shed light on the darkness.

Do you know how to fight the darkness?  Shine a light.  We interrupt this blog to talk Christmas!  “For to us a child is born… And he will be called Wonderful Counselor.” What!?  Did you see that?  Wonderful Counselor is an amazing darkness penetrating, light giving name, and here is why – When someone gets great counsel, it feels like a light has been shined into a dark place.

How incredible is it that in a land filled with darkness, to a people walking in darkness, to a people living in deep darkness the light comes and the light has a name?  Wonderful Counselor. Jesus is the one who enters and He is the light.  His counsel does not point us to light; His counsel is the light because HE is the Wonderful Counselor!

Often, when Jesus was on earth, He would wrap up His teaching with the phrase, “who ever has ears to hear, let him hear.”  As Jesus traveled, He consistently repeated the invitation to “follow Him.”  The invitation to listen and to follow is exactly the response everyone should have to wonderful counsel.

Our lives can be marked by the times we heard some wonderful counsel and how we responded to it.  When we listened and followed, the darkness left and the light came but when we did not listen and follow, darkness held tight.  Our relationships, our struggle with sin, our friendship with Christ all thrive or fail over this; how we listen to and act upon wonderful counsel. Daily, we come crossroads of listening to and following after wonderful counsel from the Wonderful Counselor.  The very name Wonderful Counselor requires us to listen and follow.  Talk about a Christmas Gift! Thank you Father for sending the Wonderful Counselor into my darkness!. Off… we go now.

~ by OFF we go now on December 22, 2010.

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