This really struck me in Psalm 4:
Many are asking, "who can show us any good?"
Let the light of your face shine upon us, O Lord.
You have filled my heart with greater joy than when their grain and wine abound...
It's that line: 'Many are asking, who can show us any good?' that really strikes me, it's a word for today too, many are asking in this day and age, where is the good in this world? Our newspapers are full of horror, murder and war. We are incited to feel anger and injustice (sometimes where there is none). Every petty dispute is shared with our wider world via the powers of social media. We are awash with it and immersed in it.
And yet still people say 'where is the good?'.
It's a challenge, church.
Who can show the world good? well if it isn't us I don't know who can. I don't want to see stories in the paper of the church getting it wrong or making mistakes (which we are quite able to do, none of us are perfect!), but could we as The Church, as churches, as Christians, make a concerted effort to be bringers of good? to help those around us see the answer to this question...?
If we have the light of God shining on us, it should also be reflecting out of us, and we know, it brings far more joy than earthly pleasures - ok so grain and wine being in abundance (v.7 above) might not be quite so relevant today, but what about when you get a new car, or get to do something extravagant like a night out at posh restaurant. Isn't the joy of knowing Jesus far, far, FAR greater than that?!
My role is focussed on Mission and as such I spend a large mount of my time trying to do exactly this, trying to be a bringer of good. Where we reach out to those around us, in our projects and outreach, the first point is usually about showing something good to the people or to an area. It's about recognising the needs in a place that God has led us to and addressing them the best we can. We want to be seen as people who can show some good to those around them. I'm not going to turn this into a rant about churches that don't get what 'mission' is, or who don't engage in it, tempting though that may be ;) but I'd love it if some people read this and went away thinking:
how can I be someone who answers the question, 'who can show us any good?'...