Let Shine Your Light Brightly This Advent

Shine your light brightly to break the darkness of the world

On the first Advent Sunday, I attended the Advent Procession in our Cathedral. As I entered the cathedral I received a candle, and before the service started I witnessed how the candles lightened the cathedral. Whilst one candle clearly wouldn’t be able to light up the whole cathedral, together we had the power to break the darkness by helping each other light the candles we had been given on the way in. This simple, yet effective act, reminded me of how together we can break the darkness that exists in the world.

Advent – the season of light and hope

Advent, in its essence, reminds us that even in the darkest of nights, there exists a promise – a promise of dawn, of a new beginning. Like a beacon cutting through the mist, our light holds the power to guide, comfort, and inspire.

After listening to the readings during the Advent Procession service, I have been reflecting on the words from 1 Thessalonians 5: 4 – 5 “But you, beloved, are not in darkness, for that day to surprise you like a thief; for you are all children of light and children of the day; we are not of the night or of darkness.” With the Light of the world and Jesus in our hearts, we are the children of light.

Be the light for others

And we are called to shine the light for others, “You are the light of the world…let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven” (Matthew 5: 14 & 16). And the world needs the light, as with it comes hope.

Whether it is hope for the refugees in our dioceses, or those suffering from pain or grief, we can be the shining light for them during this time of Advent. Let’s shine for those in need so they know they can ask for help, regardless of what they may be going through. Let’s show them that they are not alone. God is with them, whatever they are going through, and we are there for them as well.

Let every act of kindness be a star that adorns the heavens, every word of encouragement a melody that reverberates through the stillness. Let shine your light brightly as you walk this path with your heart open wide, embracing the diversity of our humanity, cherishing each unique hue that adds to the kaleidoscope of existence.

Shine your light brightly

And just as one candle can light another, our spark can create a ripple effect – one that can extend beyond the walls of our churches, our homes, and even our counties… Let’s shine your light brightly and leave some sparkle wherever you go. Be the radiant soul that illuminates the world. Shine your light not in competition, but in harmony, each light complementing the other, to create a masterpiece of unity and understanding.

Let us kindle our inner flame, allowing it to burst through in a glorious display of kindness, empathy, and love. For in shining brightly, we not only light our own path but also pave the way for others to find their way to God.

Therefore, as Advent unfurls its tender wings, it beckons us to embrace the warmth of hope, to kindle the flames of love, and to illuminate the world with our brightest selves. Let’s be the light we are called to be. Just as a candle lights up our homes, or the Christmas lights illuminate our trees, you can shine your light brightly too. And not only this Advent season, and the festive period, but every day. Because every day is a gift from God and every day we can make a difference.

Let’s shine your light brightly.

Merry and bright Christmas!

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