The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it. (John 1:5)

IN 2009 IN QUEBEC, CANADA, Nathalie Blanchard lost her disability insurance benefits for depression after she posted pictures of herself on Facebook. The pictures showed her having fun at the beach. After seeing the photos, her insurer hired a private investigator and asked a doctor to reevaluate her diagnosis. As a result, her insurer revoked her previous claim.

In our digital age, it has become harder to keep our secrets private. Are there things in your life that you want to keep private from God?

We talk about Jesus as the Light of the World as a joyful pronouncement, but we have to realize that Jesus’ presence cuts both ways. It is a blessing, but it can also cause pain.

Between the Old and New Testaments, a dark period of about four hundred years descended on God’s people. It was against this backdrop of darkness that Jesus was born. Jesus came into the darkness to bring light. He will come into the darkness of our lives as well. Jesus comes to penetrate and chase away the darkness.

As followers of Christ, we need to allow the light of Christ to expose every area of our lives so there are no more places of darkness. When we see ourselves in God’s light, we see ourselves as we really are, and that knowledge leads us to repentance and gratitude.

Ask the Holy Spirit to show you the areas of darkness you have kept hidden.

Jeff Hughes lives in Nebraska with his wife, Sarah, and their three kids. They spend their weekends outdoors hiking, camping, and skiing.