No one needs to light your candle
Picture credit: Ralf Weiser
Last night we attended a wonderful Christmas Eve church service. At the end everyone lit a candle holding it up high as the lights were turned down really low. The church’s inside was wonderfully aglow with the lights our candles emitted. The pastor reminded us that if we all let our lights shine how wonderful it is when we come together and how wonderful it is when we illuminate the rooms we enter and how we illuminate each other.
This light he spoke of is the zest for life, our passions, our talents, our desires, our love, our gratefulness, our skills, our experience, our compassion, our empathy, and so much more pouring out of us in one intense beam.
Now compare and contrast this with a few management and leadership sayings. The one annoying me the most is the one where leaders assert that their job is to “light people’s candles” by their leadership. What’s the problem you ask? How dare anyone assume that there is not a candle alit in everyone already? The point of leadership is bringing out this light out of everyone such that it may illuminate to its full potential.
Remember that there is a bright light shining within you. You need no permission letting it shine. The Christmas story is a powerful testament to this. Just think of how a couple giving birth to a child in such a lowly place had such a great illuminating and lasting effect on us. Merry Christmas!