Sunday, December 18, 2011
One candle for everyone who reaches out to a neighbor or stranger during this Advent season, to make their burden light and their Christmas bright. For the givers and the seekers who notice the lost, forgotten and poor, who visit the prisons, feed the hungry, and befriend the lonely, that their compassion may be returned a hundredfold.
One candle for the forlorn and forgotten, whom no one will visit this Christmas, that they may know they are loved by God. For the sick, the grieving, the fearful, the suffering and the dying, that they may feel held in the arms of God, and remembered by the world.
One candle for the peacemakers and justice seekers who speak up for all of us in parks and squares around the world, in newspapers and on cardboard posters, on Facebook and in the streets, in letters and in conversations, in Churches, mosques and synagogues, in rallies and vigils, who persist and hold on, even when harassed, ridiculed, beaten, imprisoned, or ignored. That they may keep the vision of God’s peace forever in their hearts and know their voices matter.
One last candle for the dictators and thieves, the Herods and Pilates, the CEOs and presidents, the Generals and politicians, the oppressors and powerbrokers, who work without conscience, who send others to war, who kill at arm’s length, who pursue greed at any cost, because business is business and a dollar is a dollar. That their eyes and ears may be opened and their hearts turned so that they may see and hear and serve their brothers and sisters who hold a different candle.
Four candles for justice, hope, faith, and love, all lit from the fire of a star that burned across the universe two thousand years ago, illuminating the lowly manger, reflecting the infant’s first breath, and calling us to keep the flames alive.
Note: My Christmas story, Elizabeth's Hope: A Meditation can be found at www.weavings.upperroom.org