Candles are not essential to our lives anymore, but they have some profoundly important symbolic uses. One is to provide an aura of romance. Any young Romeo (or older one, for that matter) who wishes to score points with his girlfriend over dinner will want to have candles burning on the table. The soft golden light, low and flickering, conveys a powerful emotional message: I love you.
As you light a candle in your wreath for the second Advent week, light it for love. Light it to celebrate the amazing romance going on between God and you. Celebrate the commitment of the Father who has become your Father, who did not hesitate to send his Son to buy your redemption at the cost of his life. “‘Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed,’ says the Lord, who has compassion on you” (Isaiah 54:10).
Light the candle also to send an “I love you” message back to God. Let that second candle be your reminder this week that the only appropriate response to the majestic and tender and expensive love of Jesus Christ is to love him back with all your heart and soul. When Satan’s attacks make you feel small and insignificant, a failure and a fool, let that candle glow remind you of the unconditional commitment Jesus Christ has made to you.
Let that second candle remind you of the love that Jesus brings.