Hey everybody, this is Steve, and we light candles in lots of different places. On birthday cakes, in dark rooms, in stinky rooms, but one place we don’t light candles, is in church. That may seem odd, since if you’ve ever in an Orthodox Church building, you’ve seen the lit candles in the Narthex, the first room you encounter when you walk in. And though we Orthodox Christians sometimes talk about how we light candles, that’s not exactly what happens. When we light birthday candles, or scented candles, we provide the light. We use matches or a lighter, to make the candle shine. But when we step into a church building, we receive the light, the light of Christ, the light which the darkness cannot overcome. Every Pascha, or Easter, at the Tomb of Christ, the Patriarch of Jerusalem receives a miraculous gift, the Holy Light. He steps into the tomb without any matches or lighters and emerges to proclaim that Christ is Risen, with his candles, miraculously lit. In the darkness of the tomb, Christ provides the light. Because only Christ can offer true life, in His resurrection. The Patriarch emerges from the tomb with lit candles, but he doesn’t light them, Christ does. This same miraculous light makes its way to Orthodox parishes around the world, and is the same light we receive when we offer our candle. When we offer our candle, we don’t light it, we receive the light, from the church. When we offer our candle, we aren’t just offering wax; we’re offering ourselves, each other, and our whole lives, to Christ, Our God. We’re participating in the Liturgy. Where we offer God our weakness and limitation, and He offers us, eternal life. The reason a candle works is because it offers up its dull, cold wax, and in return it’s transformed in to brilliant, warm light. To shine with this light, a candle needs to shrink, to slowly decrease in size over time. In the same way we need to humble ourselves, so that God’s light can shine through us. Because it’s about Him, not us. It’s a process, and it takes work, but we all can draw closer to God. We can all allow God to transform us, from cold and lifeless wax, to warm fire, full of life and light. When we see saints in icons, we see them with halos around their heads, because they’re full of Christ’s light, and they shine it throughout the world, like living candles. So the next time you offer your candle, remember, you aren’t lighting it, you’re receiving God’s light. And you’re seeing before your eyes, the beautiful transformation that God has planned, for you. Because God wants you to be like a living candle, God is calling you to be a saint. So let’s, Be the Bee, and receive God’s light. Be the Bee, and Live Orthodoxy. Remember to Like and Subscribe! I’ll see you all next week!