The reader approached the lectern and began to read from the prophet Isaiah: “A dimly burning wick he will not quench” (Isaiah 42:3). I smiled at the unintended connection between this Scripture reading and the altar candle, which was flickering.
Lights that once shone brightly can flicker and burn out, a metaphor for many people’s experiences of daily life. We desire to let our lights shine, but find ourselves struggling and smoldering, often due to circumstances beyond our control.
Yet we are not alone. God gives us communities of support where we can shine together, drawing strength from one another. As the church, we are called to pray for one another. In the meal of Holy Communion, as we receive the body of Christ, we are fed and nourished. We are recharged and renewed for our callings. Letting our lights shine before others includes helping others’ lights to shine. Sometimes we are called upon to share our lights so that others can shine brightly. Sometimes we need courage to admit when we need others to tend our dimly burning wicks.
This message is excerpted from “The light bearers” by Julie A. Kanarr in the January/February 2020 Gather magazine. Today is the 24th Sunday after Pentecost.
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