Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.
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.
Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
As Christians we have Christ living in us, and this passage of scripture is talking about not being ashamed to show Christ in our lives, or claim that We are His followers.
I would like to share another understanding that I have of this passage.
As human beings God has given us diverse gifts. For instance one may have a talent with carpentry while another has a gift as a pianist, or artist, or maybe you build cars, or invent things, etc. the list goes on. These are all God-given talents to be used for His glory, and to hide them under a bushel would be wrong.
As a stay-at-home daughter I was depressed about this for awhile because I felt like there was no way to use my gift (my voice) without "pursuing a career" and to do that I would no longer be in the home, which is a place set for me by my Lord. So I thought I had hidden my light under a bushel. But then recently God opened my eyes to the fact that I can use my voice in my home and community, and that performing abroad isn't the only way to be heard. So I sing while I wash dishes in the evening, and I sing while I help my neighbor with her chickens twice a week, and I sing a song at our local nursing home when our church does its monthly service there. In fact, I sing all the time!
So the reason that I just gave you my testimony was to encourage you and say this: Don't hide your gift under a bushel and think that there is no use for it because God will make a way, even if you can't see it happening. Pray and ask God to show you how to best use your Gift for His glory. Ask advice from your parents, or if you are on your own seek advice from the Titus Two figure in your life. Be the bright Light that God has called you to be, and never give up on His will for you because no matter how hard you try to cover that Light, it will break through.
And as for the true interpretation of this scripture I believe that it is talking about our faith in Christ, or our stance as Christians. "A city that is set in a hill cannot be hid." So what is He saying here? We are not to be ashamed by or of the gospel of Christ. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid, in fact, it can be seen for miles and miles. As followers of Christ we are not to be ashamed to admit ourselves to be followers, to be seen as "odd," or to be asked if we do something for "some religious reason." God called us His "Peculiar people" and that tells me that we're supposed to stand out, to be an anomaly. Like our forefathers that stood up to the church and said "this is wrong" and came over to America to start a new country where they had the freedom to worship God as He asked. But now that this freedom is being taken away from us we are the odd ones, the anomaly, and what we do is not the "norm." In other countries you will be killed for acknowledging this faith whereas here in America you might be laughed at or (worst case scenario), you could lose your job. Jesus said "Take up your cross and follow me," but what exactly did He mean by that? I don't think He meant "Put a fish sign on the back of your car and continue on your merry way," He meant something more like this; "A greater love hath no man than this, to lay down his life for a friend." "There is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother." That friend is Jesus, who gave His all for us and literally suffered through hell for us to pay for our sins and take away our guilt so that we could be free. What do we do with that freedom? Throw it back in His face. Why? Because we're sinful wretches that can't even say thank you for the Life that He has given us, a life free from guilt and shame. God loved us so much that He sent His only Son to die for us and to pay for our sin, and we say we're following Him until the first person laughs at us and then we run and hide. Don't hide! Stand up and shine bright. The cross was into the death, and it didn't mean to simply say offhanded "I'm a Christian," it means to live for Christ, and live Christ's life. Being a Christian doesn't only mean to profess Christ, and means to live for Christ. What does it mean to live for Christ? I'm not one of those obsessive "WWJD" people that make it like a game to be a Christian, but I try to gauge everything I do by what He would want me to do. I dress in a way that I think would be pleasing to Him, I try to talk and act in a way that would be pleasing to Him, in fact I try to live my life as if He were right here walking with me all the time. I'm not saying that I always do those things God knows better than me how miserably I fail at that every day. But even though i have my times of wondering why I even bother to try I still know that it is all worth it in the end.
So I am asking you just to think about this: if you profess Christ you should live for Him. Do what you do for Him, or you are not truly His. Jesus said "If ye love me ye will keep My commandments," and 1 John 5:3 says "For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous."
All I ask is that you think about it. Just think about it.
Accountability is a good thing, and like-minded friends are even better. Here are thinks to two different conferences: one is a homeschooler's conference here in Texas, and the other is a Christian conference in North Carolina.
https://ncfic.org/ in Events you will find "The Highway to Holiness" and that is the conference I will be attending. If any of you wind up attending either one please shoot me an email and I will make sure that I meet up with you. I would love to meet any and all!