Lighthouse and sunset

Keepers of the Lower Lights

Through our daily actions and words, we can be a light that guides people to Christ.

While most people know that lighthouses direct ships safely into harbors, many people may not realize that other lights are still necessary to help ships reach the shore. If ships simply steer in the direction of the lighthouse, they will likely run into rocks, reefs, and other obstacles. Lighthouses also have lower lights, which ships can align themselves to and continue toward the lighthouse, following a safe passage and avoiding the rocks. The lighthouse is the ultimate destination, but the lower lights illuminate the best route.

String of Christmas lights


In Robert D. Hales’s BYU devotional “That Ye May Be the Children of Light,” he explains how we can act as the lower lights and guide people to the ultimate source of light and peace: Jesus Christ. Elder Hales asks, “Have you ever stopped to think that perhaps you are the light sent by Heavenly Father to lead another safely home or to be a beacon from a distance to show the way back to the straight and narrow path that leads to eternal life?” Although we may not always be aware of the impact we have on other people, our daily example can be a guiding light that leads people to the Savior.

The hymn “Brightly Beams Our Father’s Mercy” emphasizes the importance of the lower lights, saying, “Brightly beams our Father’s mercy / From his lighthouse evermore, / But to us he gives the keeping / Of the lights along the shore.” Jesus Christ provides heavenly mercy, but it is our job to provide the lower lights so people can find their way to him. Our daily actions and words may seem to have little influence on others, but if we align ourselves with the source of all light—the Savior—we can have a profound, illuminating impact on the people around us. We can be the lower lights that guide people safely to their Savior. 

Learn more about how we can be sources of light by reading Elder Robert D. Hales’s full devotional, “That Ye May Be the Children of Light.”

Source: BYU Speeches

—Kate Blatter, Latter-day Saint Insights


Find more insights

Check out President Thomas S. Monson’s BYU devotional “Be a Light to the World” to hear stories of how being a shining light can impact other people. 

Take a look at Caroline Stickel’s article “Be a Light, Not a Judge” to learn more about how being a light to others can create unity and belonging.

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