Go Light Your World

Candles and Christmas go hand in hand, don’t they? We burn those jar candles that smell like balsam and fir trees or peppermint and chocolate. We put those electric candles in all our windows through the holiday season. We give them as gifts. I recently saw a sale on Yankee Candles… Five of the large jar candles for $50!! (Lots of folks excited about that one.)

At church, we have an advent wreath with candles to light for each Sunday during the advent season and a big center candle to represent the light of Christ. We use candles in ceremonies like weddings. Our church has a special candle-lighting on Christmas Eve. Everyone has a candle lit and they turn off the electric lights… It’s stunning and beautiful and moving.

I woke up with Chris Rice’s song in my head this morning, Go Light Your World. Here are some of the lyrics, but please click here to listen.

There is a candle in every soul
Some brightly burning, some dark and cold
There is a Spirit who brings a fire
Ignites a candle and makes His home

Frustrated brother, see how he’s tried to
Light his own candle some other way
See now your sister, she’s been robbed and lied to
Still holds a candle without a flame

Carry your candle, run to the darkness
Seek out the helpless, confused and torn
Hold out your candle for all to see it
Take your candle, and go light your world

You know how when the power goes out in a storm, and you light one little candle just to be able to see… That one little candle can light the entire room!!! A little light goes a long way. And one little candle flame lights another and another… The way I see it, our “candle” is our smile. Our hug. That note of encouragement we write. That prayer we send up that he never even knew about. Our gift to the Salvation Army angel tree. The shoebox we packed for Operation Christmas Child. The meal we took to help out a little. The sandwiches we helped make at the soup kitchen. The hand we offer any time, any place. And so. Much. More.

It’s Christmas! Be the hands and feet of Jesus. Go light YOUR world.

Along the ride

Yesterday, I wrote about happiness being a byproduct of gratitude. (Read HAPPY here.) After writing that post, I hopped on my brand new bike to take it out for its maiden ride. I thought I’d just ride up the road a little, check it out, see how it feels, make sure the seat height is right… Nothing too radical. After all, I hadn’t ridden for several years because of spine issues and surgeries.

IT FELT SO GOOD!!!!! I rode a little way up the road, then a little further, then I conquered a long hill. I set myself a boundary and, when I reached it, I sent up a bullet prayer of thanks to God. I rode for an hour! It was HARD. We live on a little country road with lots of hills and curves. A challenging course for most accomplished riders. Granted, I stayed in the lowest gear while conquering those hills, but conquer I did! And all along the way I was sending up prayers of thanks and gratitude.

Gorgeous blue skies
Wispy clouds
Perfect temperature
Birds
Made it to the end of our road
Crickets
Cicadas
Cows
NO dogs
Made it up that hill
Only one car
My new bike
Time to ride
Got up that long hill without having to walk my bike
My healed back so I can ride
Strong legs
My husbands encouragement
Danville Bike & Fitness for fitting me with the perfect bike

You get the picture. Overcome with gratitude!! And I have to tell you, I am a happy girl!!! It stayed with me all day as I washed furniture and put my living room back in order. The paint job looks fabulous, the furniture is rearranged and clean, the excess “stuff” is boxed up and ready to take someplace else… Any place else!

At the end of the day, I was exhausted, invigorated, grateful, thankful, and happy. I fell asleep thanking God for every little bit of it. And this morning, I have hope that my strength and health will return.

Attitude of gratitude = happy heart = hopeful spirit. And Hope can change everything!

Go here to listen to Hope Can Change Everything by the K-LOVE Fan Awards Artists