Whilst I know I should be used to it by now, I have to confess that I continue to be shocked each year by the rapid change in the shops each year, once halloween is over. The transformation from all things orange (well mainly pumpkins), to glitter, tinsel and more than a Christmas tree or two, is staggeringly quick. We are now fully aware of the ‘toned down’ TV adverts that all the large chains are broadcasting – toned down because 'things might be tighter this year', but they still nevertheless fill our plasma screens for a good seven weeks or so before Christmas Day.
However, I have to say that in terms of my spiritual calender, I’m already drawing on the hope of Christmas well before Advent Sunday arrives. The ever darkening nights, together with news that is hard to absorb, be it global, national, or the experiences found within our own community, remind me of the bitter-sweet contrasts that are traditionally found and experienced in the Advent season. As the reading shared at morning prayer today reminded us, there is all the more reason to observe the call to "let our lights shine”, that we in solidarity with our Lord, can be lights that shine in the darkness, knowing that however fragile that light might seem, it can’t be put out.
May our little lights indeed shine, and bring hope to others!
Keep in touch
Keep the faith.