Daily Devotionals

The Secret to Catching Fireflies

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Scripture: “You light a lamp for me. The LORD, my God, lights up my darkness.” – Psalm 18:28

During the summer months, my son Caleb’s and my favorite thing to do in the evening is catching fireflies. We enjoy seeing who can catch the most, and then we release them. One night, I had only managed to catch one firefly in my mason jar, and Caleb had at least five. I asked him, “How do you catch so many so quickly, and I’ve only caught one?” Looking up, he pointed to the street light and said, “You stay too close to that light, but I go over to the back of the house where it is really dark. The fireflies are easier to see, so they’re easier to catch.”

That simple reasoning made perfect sense. It wasn’t that there were fewer fireflies around the street light, but that the backdrop of a dark, black backyard made the fireflies illuminate so much brighter and easier to see.

This experience helped me reflect on how easy it is to lose sight of all that God is doing in my life when things are going great. Sometimes I don’t see the everyday blessings or appreciate the miracles that fill my life. I begin living on autopilot in my faith and rest in what is comfortable on the safe, well-lit path of life.

But recently being faced with a very challenging season of darkness, I have noticed much more of God’s goodness and the subtle ways he shows his love. Whether it is hearing a verse from God’s Word that speaks directly to my heart, having sisters in Christ reach out to me with words of encouragement at the exact right moment, or even just enjoying the everyday moments with my children, I am noticing God’s light.

Walking through a time when questions remain unanswered and solutions have yet to come, I could easily drift into hopelessness. But I praise God that he lights up my darkness (Psalm 18:28). God gives me his peace during the journey of walking through the uncertainty, and he is teaching me the truth found in Romans 12:12–  “rejoicing in hope, persevering in tribulation, devoted to prayer.”

Don’t get me wrong– I am not saying to go in search of darkness or stray from living for God. Rather, if you find yourself in a painful season of life, it is then that you can experience God’s presence richly and trust him deeply. During that time, the small blessings that may have gone unnoticed will suddenly have the greatest meaning. Your ears will be listening intently and able to hear his whispers to your heart: “It is going to be ok.” Your purpose in the process is to grow stronger in faith as you walk closer with God.

If you are experiencing a time of hardship, I hope that you will see God’s light and love shining through the darkness. If you are experiencing a season of light, perhaps God is looking to use you to shine his love and power into someone else’s situation. Either way, he is worthy of praise and glory! God remains good, even when life is hard.

After hearing my son’s secret to catching fireflies, I followed his lead that evening. It was beautiful to see so many sparkling fireflies that filled the dark corner of the yard. The darker the area, the brighter their light shined. Oh, I pray to always have eyes that see the Light!

Prayer: Dear God, I take great comfort in knowing that you are always at work in my life and that you use even the difficult seasons to draw me closer to you. Thank you for showing up in powerful ways to remind me that you are in control. I place my hope and trust in you. In Jesus’s name, I pray. Amen.

Submitted by Sarah West