Children of the Light
For you are all children of light, children of the day. We are not of the night or of the darkness. So then let us not sleep, as others do, but let us keep awake and be sober. For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk, are drunk at night. But since we belong to the day, let us be sober . . . 1 Thessalonians 4:5-8
Growing up, my mom used to tell me that nothing good happened after midnight. I’d amend that now to say that I simply don’t make healthy choices . . . after 10PM. I noticed a long time ago that my self-control wanes as the day ends. I never exercise late in the evening, but rather I usually find myself eating junk food, watching things that aren’t good for my mind, or simply wasting time. When I was struggling with recovery, trying to stay sober, my relapses always happened after hours. For whatever reason, I usually stand strong against temptation during the day, but at night, I lose it.
So, now I usually go to bed by 10PM. I don’t make bad choices when I’m asleep. When I go to bed early, I get up early to read my Bible, pray, meditate, and write. I used to enjoy staying up late at night so I could indulge in my appetites. Now, I find myself much happier if I go to bed, get a good night’s sleep, and awaken early for the day. In the morning, I’m constructive. I blog. I work out. I go to work. At night, I waste time on self-destructive pursuits. So now, I sleep at night.
This was a lifestyle change I needed to make when I found recovery and it echoes Paul’s metaphor found in today’s passage. In it, he said that as Christians, we’re children of the light and so, we must now live like it. If we claim faith in Christ, we must follow him. We’re no longer to indulge in those activities that we hide in the darkness. We must now live in the light, behaving in such a way that we’d not be ashamed if everyone saw.
Faith and recovery are new lifestyles that involve everything about us. Recovery isn’t just about not drinking, and faith isn’t just about believing in a thing. Faith and recovery involve changing everything about our lives so that we no longer exist solely for ourselves but for God and for others. I’m not saying that we all must go to bed by 10PM like me. I am saying that if we follow Christ, we must abandon the darkness and walk in the light. We are children of light. Now we must live like it.