Monday, September 26, 2011


Hiding under a bushel.

OK, we're not supposed to do that as believers, right??

I've got proof – one is from Scripture:

"Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house." (Matthew 5:15 KJV)

The other is from that childhood song, "This Little Light of Mine":

Hide it under a bushel - NO! 

I'm gonna let it shine. 

Hide it under a bushel - NO! 

I'm gonna let it shine,
Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.

But, you see, I've got two problems with that.

First of all, sometimes a little *bushel-hiding* is exactly what I want to do.

You know those public bathrooms where you go into the room, and then you slide a little latch over from "VACANT" to "OCCUPIED"? Well, sometimes that's what I feel like doing. Going into that room, sliding the latch over, and just sitting there for as long as I want…

I feel like hiding.

I don't feel like making the effort, or putting it out there. I'm well aware of what the enemy does to "front-line" people. I'm not thinking I want to risk that. Scaredy-cat Sharon isn't one to run around with a target on her back.

Hiding can be restful, and peaceful.

Hiding can be safe.

Here's the other problem I've got. Sometimes I feel like hiding because I want opportunity to come knocking at my door. I just get frustrated (truth? Angry…) that other people seem to have their opportunities just drop in their laps. Did you know that the movie actress Lana Turner was discovered in a malt shop? It's true. I kinda want that…

Why couldn't God send me a FedEx package with a whole wonderful opportunity all lined up, all explained in great detail, with email and phone information for the contact person that's going to make it all happen?

OK, yes, I might still sit in the "occupied" bushel-hiding place but it would be nice to have the chance come to me without any effort, you know?!

So, what else…

Our pastor has just returned from his summer break, and he's starting a new series on the book of Acts. The series is entitled, "BOLDLY." In his first message, he told us all about the exciting work that the Holy Spirit did after Pentecost. He related it to the adventure that Jesus calls US to live.

I tell you what – when I walked out of church I think I could have marched to downtown Los Angeles and preached the gospel to gangs of thugs and drug dealers. I felt invincible.

Unfortunately, that feeling didn't last.

Because I took a good look at my regular life.

Sample day? Get up, fix breakfast for ailing husband, eat mine, do my quiet time, help husband take shower, take mine (or maybe not – bushel hiders don't always care about how they smell…), get the mail, do some laundry, fix lunch for ailing husband, eat mine, go to the bank, mail some bills, stop at the market, fix dinner for ailing husband, eat mine, do some crosswords, watch some TV, help husband into bed, go to bed…perchance to sleep.

I don't know about you, but that DOES NOT sound like the blazing fire of the Holy Spirit at work.

Adventure, Lord?

If life with you is supposed to be "The Amazing Race" – then I think I'm living more like "Survivor" or "The Real World."

So, what to do with all of this?

Do I want to hide my light under a bushel? No, not really…

Do I want to wear a target on my back? No, not really…

Do I want to seek out opportunities to serve the Lord? No, not really. (I want them, I just don't want to seek them…)

But am I somehow missing the point? (There is a grand possibility here that the answer is YES!)

Does God define adventure different than me?

Does the light that must come out from the bushel need to be a beacon?


So I took another look at that mundane day.

Did I minister to my husband? Yes.

Did I serve God by helping him? Yes.

Did I speak a kind word to the post office guy and the bank teller and the checker at the market? Yes.

Did I hear from the Almighty God Himself through His Holy Word? Yes.

Did I pray? Yes.

In all of it, every single trivial and mind-numbing task, did I still exist as a child of God with the Holy Spirit alive within me? Yes, oh yes.

So, here's what I've determined.

Even if I'm tempted to hide in that little room and move the latch to "Occupied" – am I willing to come out?

And if I come out, if I take my light out from under the bushel – am I satisfied if it only flickers or glows?

Am I missing something because I'm so caught up in being a beacon, that I don't see the adventure in being a candle?

A candle doesn't put out a lot of light – but have you ever been happier for one than in the middle of a power outage?

Well, my friends, we live in a dark world. There's a serious power outage. And God is calling us…

Out from under our bushels –

Into an adventure that might just exist in the ordinary, commonplace routine of daily life.

Oh, Lord – this little light of mine, please help it shine…

Are you doing any bushel-hiding?

(I'm linked today with Michelle at Hear It On Sunday, Use It On Monday. C'mon on over and join us)

BLOG = "Blessedly Leaning On God!"


  1. G'day Sharon, I like your analogy of bushel hiding. But I think you're being way too hard on yourself. Your sample day is a day spent 'serving' others first and yourself last. So I think, and it's just my opinion, closing the door sometimes to just sit is a time of being able to re-energize. It's every bit as important and productive as all other facets of life. Your little light won't shine if you have no energy to power it.

  2. You are:
    a) Amazing
    b) Beautiful
    c) Charming
    d) All of the above!

  3. Oh, how many times have I thought that others were living the Great Adventure while I was 'stuck' in the everyday? May He continue to open your eyes to the truth of the light you are shining into the darkness of this world...even if ocassionally through the slats of that bushel basket.

  4. Great post! Yes, everything we do, no matter how "mundane" should be done to the glory of God! The under-the-basket-life is safe, but "safe" is a lonely place. I want to be a light - whatever kind God chooses!
    Blessings, Joan

  5. Well first I do hope Hub's leg is doing better. Yes I know we often look at other people and how they are making things happen in their lives. But also I am learning don't try and compare your life to others. A positive thought put out into our universe can do as much as a positive deed. Remember there are thinkers and doers. Many doers are not thoughtful they bull doze thru life getting it done. We contribute what we can and how we can bring God's love to the world. Even Jesus needed time alone. Gaining confidence to go out and light the world does not always come easy to everyone. But even a flicker of light can help someone else to see what direction they need to head. It's that the light is there that counts even when it doesn't show all the time. May your light shine whenever and whereever it can.

  6. Sharon - I agree - you are way to hard on yourself. You are wonderful. sandie

  7. Hi Sharon, I'm visiting from Hear It On Sunday. This is a great post, and I became a follower.

    I have definitely had moments where I felt like I was doing much, and I've had moments of great adventure and have been part of seeing thousands come to know Jesus across the U.S. Those were high moments in my college/single days, but those are past moments and things have slowed down in my family days. There is still the occasional opportunity, but I long for more, everyday adventure.

    Then I started noticing something in the Bible. The stories passed down to us are snippets, brief moments in the lives of these men and women.

    Consider David. He was anointed by Samuel to be the next king, killed Goliath, appointed general of the armies, and then spent the next twenty something years hiding in caves until Saul died. I bet there were some ordinary days in there.

    Consider Elijah. He calls down fire from heaven. Kills the prophets of Baal. Then flees for his life. For the next three years, he eats prechewed food from the mouth of ravens and biscuits at a widow's house. I bet there were some ordinary days in there.

    Consider Jesus. He preaches to the leaders in the temple at 12, and then starts His ministry at 30. I bet there were some ordinary days in there.

    I don't want to take up your whole comments board, but the super heroes of the Bible were just ordinary people with ordinary days just like us. Sometimes, just like us, God would say go do this or that, and something extraordinary would happen, but I think most of the time they just spent their time being faithful just like you talked about with your ordinary day.

    God Bless!

    Manifest Blog

  8. Isn't this funny, Sharon, but my pastor is in a midst of series from Acts, called Big Church, but not big as in numbers, but big in what the early church did because of the Holy Spirit acting on their behalf so to speak.

    You are so true, sometimes administering can be on a small scale nature, like to family members or people we encounter, but that is so important sometimes with advancing the gospel and reaching others with the truth of Jesus. Our light needs to shine, no matter how small, but it will make an impact on this dark world of ours. So just keep doing your best and don't bushel hide too much!


  9. "Am I missing something because I'm so caught up in being a beacon, that I don't see the adventure in being a candle?"

    That's me, far too often. I loved this.

  10. Without copying the comments that have been written already (but I do hope the leg is healing) I so get what you are saying here. This is one thing that stood out for me, while I wait to be a beacon someday if God moves to use me that way, I need too "see the adventure in being a candle". Too many of us think it is all or nothing. I'm keeping the flame alive, doing small stuff with great love.

  11. This post is just what I needed to read today, Sharon. Under difficult circumstances, I often feel like hiding, running away, becoming invisible... but being a candle... is just the first step... Eventually our light will keep growing bigger, and our influence will keep getting wider... yes, being a candle is just a first step.

    These days, God has spoken to be about stepping out of the shadows and coming into the light... It's getting in touch with who He has destined each one of us to be. But often Satan wants that negated or minimized.

    THanks for sharing so honestly. Another confirmation of the road he wants me to take!


  12. Hi Sharon. Just wanted to let you know I appreciate the comments you made on my latest post. You're not on facebook? Gee, I thought everybody was. LOL You're probably better off.

    I can identify with your wanting to just hide. I've felt that way many times. This Little Light of Mine. I first sang this in Vacation Bible School when I was in high school. Can't count how many times I've sang it since then. Thanks for the memories.


  13. Hi Sharon -

    I have a vision of higher wattage bulbs for you.
    Do you wonder WHO that vision came from?

    Love you bunches, lady!

  14. Hello, BIG lights of the Lord!

    Welcome to the new people that visited today! What a joy to meet other followers of the Lord. And thank you for taking the time to leave a comment!

    I applaud all of you for the desire that is so evident in your comments - that you truly want to SHINE for the Lord! He will honor that desire. We just have to give Him our light - and let HIM power the Light within us that glows or flickers or beams or blazes!!

    It's ALL about Him -


  15. Blessings Sharon,

    I believe this is where I should have begun my catch up. And I must say that you are way too hard on yourself. I do hope your husband is doing much better. He certainly has the best care!

    Yet I know that this sorting post goes much deeper. I realize that you are facing some of those cross roads decision making and seeing how you fit. Definitely, never thought of you as hiding under a bushel/"no"... and I even have seen your light much brighter than a candle. Many times your words have been a wonderful guiding beacon for me, both here and over at your thoughts shared with me. You have a profound light. A bit of a guiding light,or star that shines brightly in the darkness. Great self examination and ultimate reply shows you know the new adventure that awaits you. Courage, my dear sista and lots of power to step power outage where you're concerned. You shine too brightly! I can't wait to see what happens when you shine if this is under a bushel (?) I do doubt that you are anything but a dynamic source of light and connected to the main Source! Let Him lead you and follow as you lean on Him. You got it in you!

    As for me and bushel hiding, hmmmmmmmmm, maybe I have become a bit of a recluse, which is definitely not my nature... but I need to listen better to my Power Source! God's Light is the only one that I want to shine. Thanks Sharon!
    I think I see some answers to prayers on this horizon! SON shine everywhere!

    Love and peace,


"So [I] have been greatly encouraged in the midst of [my] troubles and suffering, dear brothers and sisters, because you have remained strong in your faith. It gives [me] new life to know that you are standing firm in the Lord. How [I] thank God for you!" (1 Thessalonians 3:7-9)

Thanks for your comments - it is such a joy to be sharing my journey with friends like YOU!

(NOTE: Anonymous comments will be removed. Thank you for understanding.)