This is a picture of the candle tray, taken after our Longest Night Service. LP asked me why it was such a blur of light and I pointed out that the flames are all flickering. I wish I had thought of making a movie instead. At that moment I simply wanted to capture a memory for myself. A service designed to help those in need, that's what the Longest Night is. Have I not been one of those grieving, disappointed people?
But the truth is the candles and the music and the readings simply confirmed what I am beginning to know: I'm better. I feel better about things.
I have hope.
I even have joy.
My prayer as I lit a candle on Tuesday night was this: "Thank you for all the lights that shone in the darkness."
There's something about the yellow "white" lights on houses and in yards that cheers me, that warms me. Our house has some bluish white lights (indoors only) and colored lights on the tree. But next year I think I'm buying new ones: warm, white ones.
Today was longer than yesterday, and even better the sun came out this afternoon. We've turned the corner. Tomorrow is Christmas Eve, my favorite night of the year, and then it's Christmas Day, and I love my plans for worship on the 26th and my further plans for some vacation time next week.
After winding down toward the shortest day, I feel an uplift, a resurgence, even, dare I say it, a new birth.