Illumination: a photo reflection

In the cool of December, the nights are longer. We need lights. We live in a world were lighted screens shine on our faces most of the day–computers, smart phones, TVs, and even the blinking lights of the microwave oven. We cannot escape light. But, there is something about decorating with lights and candles that brings mystery into the scene. Winter becomes livable and cozy.

I absolutely love Christmas lights. I took the above picture last night with my iPhone with a macro lens attached. We decorate a tree each year for Christmas and lights are a part of that. This is our sixth Christmas here in Southern California and with local moves the third home within that same time. Our tree has been a constant over the years as seasons in life have transitioned my family. A small epiphany occurred last night. By turning off the lights in the house, it gave room for our tree to shine.

Illumination to what goes on in our souls requires a moment like this. There is so much pain to face in the holiday season when deceased loved ones are absent from the dinner table, circumstances deal blows, and former friends no longer call on you. Darkness is a real part of Christmas. Let’s face it. It hurts to recall even the most joyous times. As years progress, hope is less in front of you and regret lives in your rearview mirror. Poignant however they may be, memories are the lights that inform our current darkness. Embrace them. All of them.

“But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what they have done has been done in the sight of God.” – (Jesus) John 3:21

Rich Kirkpatrick

Rich Kirkpatrick

Writer, Speaker, and Musician. Rich Kirkpatrick was recently rated #13 of the “Top 75 Religion Bloggers” by, having also received recognition by Worship Leader Magazine as “Editor’s Choice” for the “Best of the Best” of blogs in 2011, 2014, 2015 and 2016.

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