A Candle in My Window



By: Wanda Fielder

Having travelled for the first seven years of our marriage, it was with great excitement that we purchased our first home in Ironton, Ohio, after accepting the pastorate there. We fell in love with a white, two-story older home with black shutters, and we began the process of filling it with furniture. I was enamored with the transformation that evolved through interior decorating, and to this day still love the challenge of decorating. One of the very first additions that I made to our home was to add small electric candles to each window facing the front of the house. I loved the warmth conveyed and the cozy effect on a dark night! Thirty-eight years have gone by and two houses later I still keep those lights in my windows year round and have them set on a timer to burn even when I am away from home.

Upon researching the history of candles in the window some interesting facts were discovered. In the United States this tradition began during Colonial times, but of course, in other cultures it goes back much further. Obviously, it was a burning candle until the progression of electricity. There were many intriguing reasons for the candle such as a sign of good news or a beacon to a weary traveler, or a welcome to a guest. It was also used during heavy storms and saved many lives. During the time of war, mothers would light these candles as a husband or son left to serve their country with a promise that it would burn each night until their return. The candle in the window finally evolved to simply a welcome sign of friendship and evokes the warmth of home and family. I love the message it portrays!


Pondering this warm tradition I began to apply it to my life and wondered if I conveyed a welcoming spirit like the candle in the window. Do I give a friendly and approachable vibe to those around me? Perhaps my smile is like the candle symbolizing warmth and welcome. I sure hope so! There might be a weary pilgrim that is looking for a small beacon of light in their very dark world. A smile and a sweet spirit may pour balm on an aching heart. Communication doesn’t necessarily require words.


Keep your candle brightly burning!




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