In one of my recent ‘seeds’ I wrote about a menorah I had seen on a Christmas tree in our church. I referred to the six - or eight-branched menorah, and afterwards a Messianic believer-friend of mine told me that the eight-branched version is called a chanukiah, not a menorah. She also told me that the central candle on both is called the ‘Servant’ (Shamash) candle which is always lit first and is then used to light the other candles.
This candle represents the Messiah who came as light into the world and then commanded that we, too, should be light to those around us – lit by the flame of the Holy Spirit. Maybe the turn of the year is a good time to take stock and see how brightly our lights are shining and pray about how we can make them stronger.
Jesus, in His prayer for His disciples, and those of us who come after, just before the crucifixion, prays: ‘I have made Your Name known to them and revealed Your character and Your very Self, and I will continue to make You known, that the love which You have bestowed upon Me may be in them (felt in their hearts) and that I Myself may be in them’ (John 17:26, Amp). What an amazing blessing as the Holy Spirit comes to us as a priceless gift from Jesus to draw us closer to our heavenly Father. Our bodies become ‘temples of the Holy Spirit’, (as Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 6:19) and we have the huge privilege of being joined to the Godhead through the Spirit.
How can we make Him more welcome? Are there areas in our lives which are displeasing to God? Do we have attitudes or thought patterns which do not agree with what God thinks about us or about those around us? We are told to be ‘transformed by the renewing of our minds’ (Romans 12: 2), something that we have to do with the help of the Holy Spirit, but it’s important that we play our part. Sometimes people come to us at Ellel for help and expect God to do it all so that they can go away and carry on exactly as before, but it takes effort on our part as well. God will, and does, speak to us in that still, small voice, encouraging us to draw closer, but it may be that there are things within us preventing the intimacy that He desires to have with us. So let’s resolve to listen to His voice and be active in making the necessary changes so that His light can shine more strongly within us to those around.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, I want to be a strong light for You, but I’m only too aware that I fail again and again. Thank You so much that You’re a wonderfully forgiving God, and that Your desire is for me to walk closely with You. Please help me to listen to the still, small voice of Your Spirit and give me the strength to make the changes that are necessary in my walk with You. May my light shine more brightly to those around me, that I may bring glory to You, in Jesus’ precious name, Amen.
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