Four candles - three purple and one rose candle - adorn the Advent wreaths used in many homes and congregations during the Advent season prior to Christmas. Advent wreaths date back to the 6th century but Advent itself began to be observed in the earliest days of Christianity. It became traditional to light a candle each of the four Sundays leading up to Christmas Day until allthe Advent wreath candles were lit together.
Candle One - a candle that represents Hope. The color purple was an expensive dye that was added to the candle signifying royalty.
Candle Two - a candle that represents Peace. Christians recall the angels’ announcement of Peace on Earth at the birth of Jesus. This candle is also purple.
Candle Three - a candle that represents Joy. It is rose colored and is lighted on the third Sunday of Advent.
Candle Four - a candle that represents Love. Also purple in color, it signifies God’s love for us as we anticipate Jesus’ second Coming.
Four candles that embody the purest emotions that Christ proclaimed to us: Hope, Peace, Joy and Love. (Some people use blue candles signifying the color of the sky before daybreak; some use a white candle in the middle of the four candles reminding us of the angels and the birth of Jesus).
As we prepare ourselves for celebrating Jesus’ birth, these four qualities guide our hearts and minds. In the midst of human suffering and chaos, we are drawn to the manger where God provided us hope and a peace that the world cannot give. In the manger lies our joy, and we know that Jesus loves us.
We anticipate His second Coming where He will gather us to be with Him in His heavenly home. As the Christmas hymn reminds us: “No more let sins and sorrows grow, Nor thorns infest the ground” (Joy to the World).
In the book of Revelation, Christ is portrayed as the Lamb of God (Rev. 5:6) and as the victorious “King of Kings and Lord of Lords” (Rev. 19:11-16) worthy of our praise. As we light our Advent candles we praise and thank God for Christ who is the Savior of the world.
One Minute is written by Pastor Ron Rehrer, Counselor for Church Workers of the PSD. Ron can be reached via e-mail at email@example.com or by phone at 949.433.5182