Something for the Children #6: Flashlights

Spotlight being cranked by hand, giving dim light

Powering our own light is just hard work!


Do you like flashlights?  They can come in pretty handy—especially if they work!  We own a rechargeable spotlight.  It is quite heavy for a flashlight, and it has a whole bunch of those little white LED lights that work together to make a nice beam of light.  The other day, my husband noticed that our spotlight was not working properly anymore.  When he clicked the button to turn it on, it would flash a good, bright flash, and then—poof!—just as quickly as it had turned on, it turned off.  He tried again and again, but that was all he got.

We were a bit disappointed.  I had accidentally dropped the spotlight a few days before.  I guessed that was probably when it had broken.

Well, this morning I was up early, early.  My son is sixteen years old now and has his own part-time job.  Since he does not have his own driver’s license just yet, this morning I was taking him to work.  We needed the van to warm up before we left, so I was headed out to do that—but I ran into a bit of a problem: I needed a light, and our spotlight was not behaving.

I thought about trying to get out to the van without the light, but we live way out in the country, and the van was not parked close to the house.  Guess what kinds of things like to wander around early in the morning out here?  There are no lions or tigers—but there are cougars and bears and other quite feisty little critters.  And besides that, with all the rain we have had, our poor driveway is a muddy, slippery mess.  It is hard enough to stay walking on two feet and avoid sitting on my bottom in an icky mud-puddle in the daylight.  I did not really want to try in the dark if I could help it!

So I was looking for another light.  When my son found out, being the problem-solver that he is, he tried the naughty spotlight anyway.  But instead of simply clicking the switch, he first wound up the little handle that cranks up power for the light.  Have you ever tried one of those?  It takes quite a lot of turning just to get a little bit of light!  But guess what!  It worked!

Happy for anything, off I went.  I walked outside, down our walkway, and out into the mucky driveway.  All the time, I was spinning, spinning, spinning that little handle.  It let out a little growl each time it came around, and my spotlight was truly a flashlight.  Flash, flash, flash.  A dim light—and then dark; a dim light—and then dark.  But I worked hard and made it all the way to my van.

The only thing was, when I got there, I had to use my hand to open the van door.  That meant I had to stop turning the handle.  Guess what happened then!  Yes, the light turned off.  No power, no light.  I made it safe and managed to stay on my two feet all the way, but I got to thinking.

Jesus said that His Word, the Bible is like a light for our path.  It shows us where to go and what to do.  It keeps us safe.  Sometimes, we seem to think we can just figure life out on our own.  We try really hard to be nice and happy and obedient.  But it’s like cranking that light.  We work, work, work—but if we stop for half a second, all our work just goes away.  We cannot go through life like that, can we?  Pretty soon, we will just say, “Oh well, it’s just too hard!”

The real problem is that we need Jesus to power up our lives.  We cannot do it ourselves.  And just like there are bears and cougars outside at my house in the dark, the Bible tells us that Satan is out to get us, just like a roaring lion.  Without the Bible to teach us what is right, we might not see Satan’s tricks.  When Satan gets us, we are not happy.

I want Jesus to power up my life—how about you?  Let’s spend some time reading our Bibles and talking to God in prayer today!  And when I am done with my story, I think I’ll go plug that spotlight into the wall!

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