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Thoughts on a candle

A candle serves many purposes, both worldly and spiritual. If we want to grow, whether worldly or spiritually, Amelia illustrates how we can do so by being more like a candle.
A candle gives warmth and light. In the Church, each one also symbolizes a prayer. A candle is useful in many ways, including to the glory of God. Whether it's lit in prayer for someone, or whether it's the light by which we read a prayer, a candle fulfills its purpose.

But a block of beeswax is not the same thing as a candle. It has every bit of potential to be, but it's not there yet. It's inherently good, but until it's melted down, poured into a mold, and given a wick, all it can do is sit there.

Most of us are like the block of raw beeswax. We're all good by nature—God created us to be perfect—but we're just sitting there. We're afraid of being melted. We don't want to be reshaped. We don't think we need a wick. We may not like how we are, but we'd rather remain that way—useless to ourselves, to others, and to God—than to go through whatever is necessary to make something of ourselves.

We all need to be melted down in one way or another. We have sins to confess and repent for. We have wrong ideas and beliefs that need to be done away with. God's fire, which is really His love, is powerful enough to "melt" us down to our original form, preparing us to be reshaped into what He originally intended for us to be.

The reshaping happens in the Church. Many of us try to shape ourselves on our own—in the gym, with our educations, our worldly pursuits—but ultimately we end up malformed in some way. The mold that should be shaping us is the Church: God's word, His holy mysteries, the counsels of the saints, the leadership of pious people. We need all of these things to ensure that our inherently good nature doesn't solidify into the wrong form.

And while our souls are still soft and malleable, what we need the most is the Lord Himself. If we are the candle, then He is the wick. He is our light, our hope, our purpose, and the ability to fulfill that purpose. We have none of these things without Him. The only difference between the Lord's flame and an actual candle's, however, is that the Lord's never extinguishes.

Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
— Matthew 5:16, KJV