This week, the Jewish people celebrate the wonderful Festival of Lights, Hanukkah. This festive celebration is a time where families gather together to light the “Hanukkiah” (Menorah), eat tasty donuts and fried potato latkes (fat-free of course!), play the dreidle game, and most importantly, recount the heroic story of the Maccabe’ans, a group of God-fearing people who were not willing to compromise and refused to bow down to the false Greek gods. The result was yet another miraculous victory of God’s faithfulness to those who stand for Him, as well as the re-dedication of God’s Holy Temple in Jerusalem, which had been grossly defiled.
In Jewish tradition, it is customary for one to place the lit menorah on a windowsill for others to see it, and be reminded of God’s faithfulness to His people. This actually reminds me of something Yeshua said when He was on earth; referring to this special feast in the book of John, he said:
…“I am the light of the world; he who follows Me shall not walk in the darkness, but shall have the light of life.” John 8:12
In my last blog entry, I challenged us to rededicate our lives to God – to follow Him, and allow Him to shine His light through our lives so that those in darkness may see Him in us. In order for this to happen, however, we ourselves must be people who walk in the light and not in the darkness. We need to rid ourselves of the things of the world and walk in the light that Yeshua commanded us to walk in.
It is not enough to just say that we believe; we need to model to others what it means to be a follower of the Messiah. Yeshua told us:
“You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. “Nor do men light a lamp, and put it under the peck-measure, but on the lampstand; and it gives light to all who are in the house. “Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.” Matt 5:14-16
In the same way we put the Menorah in the window so that others will remember the wonders of our Lord, let us shine His light in the way we live, as we become living Menorahs, so others will see Him and also desire His light for their own lives.
Hag Hanukkah Sameach!
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