Winter has begun in earnest. The weather is turning colder and the days are getting shorter. And although we are in a season of increasing dark, it is no coincidence that churches are lighting candles and increasing light. It is in this season of darkness that the church comes to witness to the light of Christ.

Jesus comes to us like a brilliant lighthouse leading us to safe harbor. Christ's arrival is heralded by a star shining in the sky that leads all to new life and new hope. And as Christ is a brilliant light shining in our lives, we light candles and display lights in remembrance of him.

And so we illuminate our homes and our churches to reflect the light that comes to us from God. We are mirrors that shine light where there is darkness due to sin or despair. And this is where we remember about Jesus warning us to not hide our light under a basket, but rather to let it shine out so that all can see by its light.

While a single candle may not seem to shed much light, and sometimes we may feel like our candle is barely burning at all, when we come together to share light with one another we more fully feel the light of Christ. So as we come together at church and with families and friends this holiday season and into the next year, let us be conscious of sharing our light with one another, as Christ has shared his light with the world.

? Pastor Benson is the pastor at the United Methodist Church in John Day and Prairie City.

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