Last month, my family spent a few days with my wife’s parents while our fixer upper was being insulated. As I was waking up on the first morning, I began to laugh while still in that delirious-still-sleeping stage. I was thinking about a simple passage from the Bible that I remembered… but very, very differently.
As I laid there, I just kept repeating,
"The Lord is one."
"The Lord is one."
"The Lord is 1."
Now, I’m pretty sure that I began laughing because, somehow, I began to imagine God as a superhero with a large #1 on his chest! Hilariously ridiculous, I know! But, what was amazing was what I began to see as I thought about this idea that God is 1.
In my last blog post, I shared an illustration about the darkness that fills an empty gymnasium with no windows. I talked about how we can introduce light to the darkness by lighting a candle. The tiny flame has the power to illuminate the space without the darkness having any control or power over it. We can add more darkness by increasing the size of the room, but, even with the added darkness, the light is unaffected. It continues to shine.
Here’s where it gets good!
God is 1. God = 1. Light = 1. It has substance. It has essence.
Darkness = 0. It is nothing. It is nothingness. It brings nothing of value to the table. The adversary is 0.
Whether you come from a faith tradition, or not, I’m sure you can relate, as it is often taught and understood that there is an evil force at work in the world. In fact, we often use “war-like” language to describe the battle that is taking place between good and evil, light and darkness, and even God and Satan. We typical make the assumption that if God = 1, then the enemy = -1. Right? But the problem with this idea is in a simple math equation. If our adversary (-1) and we add that to God (+1), we get 0. That doesn’t make sense! Is that all that life is? Nothing!?!?!
This is simply not the case. Remember, darkness is nothing! The enemy = 0! So, when we add God (+1) to the enemy (0), we get +1! We are left with light and love! We are left with God.
Over the past few decades, we have watched society move into the digital age. When I grew up, I was listening to cassette tapes and moving the television antennae to capture the clearest analog signal possible. Now, everything is digital. Did you know that digital is a simple code of 1’s and 0’s? It’s a message of light and dark. It’s a string of something and nothing. Amazing, huh!
I love this awareness!
First, I realize that any “power” I attribute to the darkness has been given to the darkness by my belief that it has power. Wow, what freedom this offers me! I do not have to live my life afraid of the darkness! I don’t have to succumb to any sort of power I might have thought it had, because the darkness = 0!
Second, I know that I have the privilege and responsibility to be intentional with what is going on in my mind. I must take my thoughts captive. It’s my purpose to take the energy that is flowing to me and through me and shape it into light each day. I am here to bring a +1! I refuse to bring nothing! I believe in bringing love and light to my family, friends, community, and world!