Thursday, February 3, 2011


Yesterday was Candlemas. It was our very first celebration of this simple festival. Its timing say the least, for this week has been busy and full of new family rhythms. The school year began, returning me to the classroom once again. This year I am teaching more often. Thankfully, I will have only 8 students instead of 36! With my new schedule came the need to re-work the ebb and flow of our family. This week has been a trial (and error) week.
Needless to say, I needed the day to ponder, reflect, and listen to message of Candlemas: that the old has (and is) given way to the new. On Candlemas many people in the Church remember Mary and Joseph's presentation of Jesus at the Temple. I had never before thought about the profundity of this event: the Temple, the "old way" of meeting with God and making right our relationship with Him, embraced and yielded to The (new) Way! 
This can be seen in creation too, whether you live in places where the days are slowly lengthening and life is beginning to resurface (even if it's beneath several feet of snow); or whether you live in a place like ours. Here, the seed pods still stubbornly cling to branches where tiny green leaves are beginning to shoot forth.

The mango trees are full with fragrant flowers. The parched land waits expectantly for rain. Here, now, the old and the new are in many ways co-existing. 
One of the beauties of yesterday is that it actually rained. Shawn and I awoke at 4 a.m. to the sound of the rain on our tin roof. 
HE has come to make all things new.

To celebrate Candlemas, the old giving way to the new, we burned down our old candles.

We set out new candles, and we filled all our lanterns (here, lanterns are more than just decoration and ambiance--they're necessary!).

For us, Candlemas was a day for simplicity and contemplation. At the end of the day, I felt richer and renewed. I will look forward to this day next year.

"Behold, I am making all things new!" Revelation 21:5

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