Wednesday (December 15, 2021)

“For John the Baptist has come eating no bread and drinking no wine, and you say, ‘He has a demon’; the Son of Man has come eating and drinking, and you say, ‘Look a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners! Nevertheless, wisdom is vindicated by all her children.” (Luke 7:33-35)

Are Advent candles blue or purple? At some point growing up, I remember our church replacing the purple candles around the advent wreath with blue ones. You may have noticed that we have blue candles here at St. Timothy while some other churches you visit might have purple. 

Both colors have roots in the history of the church and are appropriate for the season, but they do emphasize different parts of the Advent journey.

Blue is traditionally a color of hope, the official color of Mary, and an indication that these four weeks are supposed to be spent in eager anticipation. Purple, capturing the themes and symbolism of Lent, represents somberness and solemnity. You will find advocates for both colors among the faithful and some who feel strongly one way or the other. 

But a passage assigned for Advent like the one from the 7th chapter of Luke’s Gospel reminds us that there is room for both. In ancient Judea people were mad at John for being so bland and Jesus for being so vibrant. So which is right? Blue or Purple, John or Jesus? The answer is both.  This Advent season let your heart tell you what you need. Do you need a reminder to hope this season? Do you need to be reminded that it is ok to feel solemn even amid the supposed cheer? There is room for all in the warmth of the stable that God is providing this Christmas.

Let us pray: Dear God, no matter how we are feeling this Advent season, we know that you are always with us, Emmanuel. Remind us of this truth as we light the candles on our wreaths. For you are always the light shining in the darkness. Amen

Peace in Christ,

Pr. Daniel Joyner Miller