Thursday, December 11, 2008

Light A Candle

Light a candle
for the old man who sits staring
out a frosty windowpane

Light a candle
for the woman who is lonely
and every Christmas is the same

For the children who need
more than presents can bring

Light a candle
light the dark
light the world
light a heart or two
light a candle for me
I'll light a candle for you

Light a candle
for the homeless and the hungry
a little shelter from the cold

Light a candle
for the broken and forgotten
may the season warm their souls

Can we open our hearts
to shine through the dark

Light a candle
light the dark
light the world
light a heart or two
light a candle for me
I'll light a candle for you

And in this special time of year
may peace on earth surround us here
and teach us there's a better way to live
and with every flame that burns
we must somehow learn
that love's the greatest gift
that we could ever give

Light a candle
light the dark
light the world
light a heart or two
light a candle for me
I'll light a candle for you.
-Avalon

I've been listening to this song a lot tonight and couldn't help but post the words. I don't typically write a lot of personal stuff on here, but I really felt like sharing a few words about something I've been feeling this holiday season.

First of all, I've YET to buy Christmas gifts. I've hardly had time in-between holiday shoots and temp work to even think about what to buy everyone. I know I want to buy gifts that will benefit, but I'm coming up blank this year.

After hearing this song tonight I couldn't help but stop and think about the true meaning of this season. I'm part of a "mission group" that meets on Wednesdays. We are currently learning what it means to be a community and how we can live out our lives the way Jesus TRULY wants us to together without selfishly interpreting the bible to fit our needs. Anyway, last nights discussion really got me thinking about what it fully means to "sacrifice" my life for the Lord. I got to thinking about Christmas and all that it means for the world of believers. This season represents the best gift of unselfish love, for a world that is hurting and a people who yearn for truth and meaning. It represents every bit of good that one can offer to humanity and in the most non-material way. So why do I, as a believer, drown in the disappointment (mostly caused by myself) when I have yet to find the best "present" for my friends and family? Why do I struggle so much with the fact that consumer America spends more on Christmas crap than we do on giving things that go much further in humanity? How did we ever get so far into gift giving, rather than the sacrifice of ourselves and physically helping others, and of all times at Christmas?

Don't get me wrong. I'm no grinch...I love giving to my friends and family. I'm just deeply convicted this year about the KIND of gifts I give. I mentioned before that I'd like to give gifts that benefit organizations. My first thought is "what can I get that will benefit and in turn be a physical gift I can hand to my people come Christmas day?" But why does it even have to be that way? Why can't I NATURALLY ask myself "What can I give that will benefit humanity?" and end there. I want to give and I want a physical gift. But is God calling me to sacrifice in the sense that I give every non-material part of me to help people who need it way more than any present ever could? And how does He view the time I spend shopping for material items and the money I spend on them? Could I really be sacrificing myself so much more?

Sometimes I wish we just took the time to light a candle for the world. For the widow, for the poor, for the hurting, for the starving. And I wish that would be satisfying enough.

I encourage everyone to listen to this song and think about how you can help a person in need this holiday! And think outside the box...give things that will help and make a much more lasting impression than anything material ever would.

God Bless! MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!
Love, Abby

3 comments:

Jacquelyn said...

beautiful abby. this reminds me, i was rereading our devotional last night after bible study and one of the exercises was to think and pray throughout the week about what you struggle giving up everyday. anyway, let's discuss soon what those are for us, k? k. :)

realolivegreen said...

I love that song; it's so powerful. My family started not giving gifts last year and donating to causes that were meaningful to us. This year we are donating to my cousin who has a baby on the way and her husband is in Mexico due to an incorrect deportation 3 years ago. Anyway, the whole idea started through the website adventconspiracy.org. You've probably heard about it. It's so much more powerful to give to something that matters than to give gifts that sit in closets or drawers. Don't get me wrong, I love gifts and think that they can be meaningful as well. It just seems at such a commercialized and consumeristic time of year that to go against the flow might make a little impact in the world. Who knows.

The Kowalskis said...

What wonderful lyrics. And, all so true. Thanks for sharing, Ab! You are so inspiring!

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