“Son of man, I have made you a watchman for the people of Israel; so hear the word I speak and give them warning from me. When I say to a wicked person, ‘You will surely die,’ and you do not warn them or speak out to dissuade them from their evil ways in order to save their life, that wicked person will die for their sin, and I will hold you accountable for their blood. But if you do warn the wicked person and they do not turn from their wickedness or from their evil ways, they will die for their sin; but you will have saved yourself.” – Ezekiel 3:17-19
At a growth group meeting last night, someone mentioned that as Christians we are like lighthouses to the world. “Lightouse” – now that’s a term that I haven’t heard in a while. A dear brother mentioned it because we were engaged in trying to understand a passage in Scripture that says, “Live clean, innocent lives as children of God, shining like bright lights in a world full of crooked and perverse people.” – Philippians 2:15b. Almost immediately, my memory took me back to our trip to the beautiful garden Hawaiian island of Kauai back in 2004.
During that trip, we paid a visit to the Kilauea Lighthouse – a famous landmark in the island. This picturesque structure appeared in the popular Disney movie Lilo and Stitch, and played a more prominent backdrop in the sequel, Stitch! The Movie. In this movie, the lighthouse is said to have been shutdown for several years due to the expense involved in keeping it running. Near the end of the movie though, an experiment called Sparky, made his home in this lighthouse and uses his powers to light up this beacon once again.
Lighthouses are markers that serve as a guide for safe passage for ships, especially during turbulent sea conditions. When God called Ezekiel, he was greatly distressed with the task God gave him to do – to be a lighthouse for the “rebellious” nation of Israel. He was to serve as God’s spokesperson and watchman to turn people from their sins. However, in the same way that Sparky provided the boost to make the Kilauea Lighthouse shine again, God had to infuse Ezekiel with His word and the Holy Spirit to enable him for the task of becoming a beacon of righteousness for Israel – to guide them back into the safe harbour of God’s presence and authority.
Lighthouses are costly to operate. It needs regular maintenance and up-keeping. We are much like lighthouses. Unless Jesus Christ takes residence in our hearts; unless we get daily filling from the Holy Spirit and regular feeding from God’s word, we may end up like most lighthouses in the world – shut down due to lack of maintenance.
P.S. You have a chance to become a lighthouse for the world this Saturday – February 13th. This is all because several hundred thousand people from across the world are expected to come into Toronto for the NBA All-Stars Event. Some members of GCF Peel are hitting the streets that day together with our ministry partners Sports Fan Outreach International and The Cross Current to share the gospel through the preaching of the word and gospel tract distribution. Hope to see you there!