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Advent Traditions: Candlelight

December 10, 2009

I suspect that many of you grew up attending a worship service on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day.  Your family would dress up, inevitably be running late, and rush toward the church building rarely thinking of the birth of Jesus, the Savior.  But then you would pass through the church doors and the combination of famliar Christmas music, tacky but festive sweaters, and the warmth of those around you would quickly cause all that stress to melt away.

For the next 45 minutes or an hour, you would sing joyous songs, hear triumphal passages of Scripture read, and feel like everything was right with the world.  Then, as the service came to a close, a family tradition was shared.  A tradition, not of your immediate family, but of your brothers and sisters in Christ.  A candle would be lit from the front and its light would be passed, one candle at a time around the room until that single flame had given rise to hundreds of lights.  Churches often culminate their services with this passing of light as a testimony that Jesus is the light of the world and it is our joy to be able to hold onto the light while receiving the privilege of sharing it with someone else.

I don’t know if your local church had the tradition of physically passing light from one person to the next, but whether you did or not, remember that the power of Jesus as the light is mighty.  It is big enough for you to hold and wide enough for you to continually share.  May Jesus go far and wide this Christmas season.

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