Physics teaches us that the range of colours you see on your TV screen are in fact all produced by varying proportions of red, green and blue light. Mix these three primary colours together and you get white light. It’s a little different for mixing paints, but the idea of three primary colours still holds.
Jesus called the disciples the “Light of the World” (Matthew 5:14), and also referred to Himself in the same terms (John 8:12 and 9:5). So when Paul mentions spiritual light in Ephesians chapter five, it might be appropriate to think in terms of the component colours that constitute the full spectrum of divine brilliance.
Paul has in mind three distinct hues that combine to make up the Light of the World, the light in which we are called and challenged to walk. He describes goodness, righteousness, and truth – the primary colours of a life of faith (Ephesians 5:9). When these three shine in our lives, their combination is bright indeed. Are our actions good – do the things we do and say serve to benefit those around us? Are our thoughts and motives righteous – do they line up well with the expectations of a perfect and holy God? Are we characterised as true – even by those that know us well?
A single candle in the window on a dark night can be a beacon of hope to the road-weary traveller. So too the little bit of light we can shine in this dark world is welcoming and comforting to those who are lost in the shadows. Paul tells us that we are children of the light, so we should walk in the light. Don’t forget that as new creatures in Christ, our true colours have been recalibrated, so don’t be afraid to let them show.