‘I AM’s stars and galaxies were more clearly to be seen before street lights bathed us in what the astronomers call light pollution: the lesser, man-made light overshadowing the great, created glory in the sky.
And so it happened that, far away and long ago, one night under the stars, Abraham heard the word of the Lord (Genesis 15:5-6) and believed that he was to become the father of a great nation, countless as the stars in the sky.
And today indeed, the children of Abraham, Muslims and Christians as well as Jews, are beyond counting.
Jesus proclaimed, ‘I am the Light of the World’ (John 8:12) and called us to let our light shine so brightly that people might see our good works and glorify our father in Heaven. Clearly Jesus was speaking about the inner light of grace which should be shining out from within us.
As a concrete reminder of this, and following Jewish tradition, the Church has long used light in worship: the oil lamp burning perpetually before the tabernacle or aumbry; the Paschal candle, symbolic of the risen Jesus; the candles on the altar during the Eucharist; the votive lights before Mary’s ikon; the four or five candles on the Advent Wreath.
Let us allow the little light of a candle to still us during Advent, and make room for our little light to shine with His Light.