Just One Candle

Jesus said, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life” (John 8:12). Simply put, if you do not know which way to go, Jesus will guide you.

There were no fluorescent lights in Jesus’ day, or even our flashlights which boast X-number of “candle power.” A person trekking the dark streets of Bethlehem or laboring up the winding, perilous road from Jericho to Jerusalem would usually be limited to one candle… uh, power. Yet still the brightness of that one candle would cut through the darkness and reveal a safe path (Psalm 119:105), exposing the dangers of the way (Ephesians 5:11). One other feature might be noted: when one was carrying a candle, the candle-bearer could be seen, often from a distance (Matthew 5:15), some experts say, up to 14 miles away. Viet Nam veterans would refuse to light their cigarette off the third light: on the first light, you were revealed, on the second light a sniper took aim and the third guy bought it! A one-candle person can be seen; and with it, you can light another.

If we are like Christ, we are lights in a dark world; illuminating and exposing. We are supposed to be a guiding light in culture of blackness. We should illuminate by our mere presence and people should be able to say of us, “If he or she does or says it, it is right.”

Jesus does not ask us to be a flood lamp, a beacon, or a lighthouse along the shore. One candle can be seen for miles and safely guide. Just one candle… is that so much to ask?