The Colors We Reflect to the World

Here but for a moment, we color the world around us with the work we do and the way we live out our truth in the world.My World

From Wikipedia: “The “color” of the ocean is determined by the interactions of incident light with substances or particles present in the water. White light from the sun is made up of a combination of colors, which are broken apart by water droplets in a ‘rainbow’ spectrum. Large quantities of water, even in a swimming pool, would appear blue as well. When light hits the water surface, the different colors are absorbed, transmitted, scattered, or reflected in differing intensities by water molecules and other so-called optically-active constituents in suspension in the upper layer of the ocean.”

Back in late February of this year, I was walking along the beach of the Chesapeake Bay like I do most mornings. The water was a deep grayish-navy where I walked along the shore. Aside from the white froth on the waves as they washed up, it was as if someone had inked it indigo like they dye the Chicago River green on St. Patrick’s Day. Underwhelmed by the beauty in the moment, I chose to take a couple photos of the sand dunes instead.

But since, I have thought often about how we reflect the Light in our lives.

When things are going well for us, we are often all the gorgeous colors of the Caribbean. We sparkle and dance. We are luminous! We are transparent! It’s easy to see through to the beauty beneath the surface. We are warm, welcoming and, I imagine, people are attracted… wish to dive in and get to know us, and spend time with us.

When things aren’t so great, when the silt builds up or we rock with the turbulence of strong winds, we’re darker and absorb the Light rather than reflect it. Clouds hide the sun. Deep waves churn the shore line. We appear ominous, or worse, dangerous. It’s challenging to see beneath the surface… if people even stay around long enough to look. We throw out caution signals that all is not well – there could be a rip-tide or undertow – and to keep clear.

But, when the water is darker, when we are absorbing the Light rather than reflect it, that is when we need God most deeply. It’s when He works in our lives at the most molecular levels. White light from our Savior may just be made up of a combination of colors, which are broken apart by our lives into this same ‘rainbow’ spectrum. And, when He enters us the different colors are absorbed, transmitted, scattered, or reflected in differing intensities by who He created us to be and what is happening in this season of our lives, relationships, and work.

What a way to view it, right?

Just like our moods, the beach I walk has different moods. No two mornings, afternoons, or evenings are ever close to the same. The wind blows from one direction or another – strong or soft. The temperatures are crispy cold or glaringly hot. Tide is high, or low, just like the sun, and there are clear skies or clouds hiding much of the light.

As I walked I reminded myself that the beach was no less beautiful today than any other day… it was just in a different mood. Someday, if I live at the beach here on the East Coast long enough, I will see it face a Nor’easter and a hurricane. I doubt those moods will be my favorites… but I will compassionately look to them to see what they may teach me. I am sure there are seasoned lessons there to be learned.

And, that, is what I must share today. As we face our lives, our businesses, and our work, we are in the midst (and sometimes mist) of our environment. Winds blow. Storms happen. We are reflecting or absorbing. And, if it serves you, please remember that regardless of how much you are reflecting or absorbing today… remember He, our Light, is always there, at work, and every color and blessing is present in His timing.

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