For years it has been our family tradition to "turn on" the Christmas house lights during the evening of Thanksgiving day. The "flipping of the switch" honor usually goes to our two grandsons who take delight in having the power to "make the lights shine."
At last, though worn out, I was ready for the grandchildren to come and for the official "turning on the lights" to commence. But then something awful happened!....
In all of the frantic activity of Thanksgiving (catching up with family, getting the meal prepared, watching the football games, keeping the dogs and cat separated) we totally forgot about the lights! They were all in place (and ready to go) but on Thanksgiving day we never turned them on. It wasn't until Saturday evening that we finally got them shinning.
There is a lesson for us as we now launch into the Advent season: Don't forget to let your light shine!
Lights are such a beautiful part of the Advent and Christmas season. Our family will spend at least one evening touring beautiful light displays around the city of Tulsa. In addition to being beautiful, these displays remind us of the marvelous words of Christ, "I am the Light of the World." Truly, by his coming, light will now shine in the dark places of our life. But that is the whole point: we too are to let the light of Jesus shine through us. We, through acts of kindness, charity, and mercy, are to be His light to a hurting and troubled world.
Advent is a busy time. Many preparations and tasks demand our attention. But as we make our way through this season of Advent, let's not repeat this situation of my Thanksgiving evening - let's remember to Let Our Light Shine for all to see!
Dr. Allen Schneider is a United Methodist pastor and a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist presently serving the Sapulpa and greater Tulsa communities.