At our Christmas eve communion service tonight, we had a candle-lighting. The light came off the advent candle wreath, and symbolized letting the light that Jesus brought to the earth shine through our lives, to reach others and light up their lives with His love, grace, and redemptive sacrifice for us.
As I watched my flame, it started strong, but then almost died, and then flared up, and then almost died. It continued this pattern throughout the candle-lighting service and even once the flame established, it still flickered with air currents or my breath as I sang.
I was thinking about how life sometimes is like that, our physical lives, our spiritual lives, our social lives, our emotional lives, and even our professional lives.
We go through periods where we are strong, and everything is firing on all cylinders. Then we have other periods where we are weak and our flames are almost out. We are focused, and then are scattered. Disciplined, and then we dwindle.
How do we get a flame that is burning strong all the time? I’m not sure it’s entirely possible, but thinking of building a fire, what seems to make the best fires is the kindling that is added to the fire to keep it stoked. So what kindling do we need?
Part of our kindling is practice, working on these things we know are difficult. Kindling is keeping in mind that we are imperfect and are OK as we are. It’s focusing on God’s word and prayer. It’s finding our passions. It’s working out, even if it’s a bit every day. It’s reaching out to others when we’d rather hide behind our technology. It’s loving even when we’re hurt, or hurting. It’s showing grace the way that we’ve been given grace. It’s shining the light, even if it’s just flickering; even a flickering light shines for those who are in the dark.
DAY 69 HOMEWORK: Ponder your light, and the types of kindling you need to be adding to it. Then, act.