When Your Candle Burns Low and Slow

Varied candlescandle burns low and slow

No matter the type of candle a person has been, when he is beyond retirement, the light from the candle is the same. Some of us are tall, tapered candles; some are hurricane lamps; others are votive candles. No matter the type of person (candle) we are, our lives have reduced darkness by sharing light. Yet now, our candle burns low and slow.

As we grow older and more feeble, our light should still shine even though we are not as active as we once were. We have changed. Our bodies are more frail, and our minds are more forgetful. Our energy dissipates and what once brought pleasure in doing now brings effort to accomplish. There’s no point in denying that now our candle burns low and slow.

Are we good for nothing?

candle burns low and slowWhat good is a candle that burns low and slow?

For the true believer, our work is not done until God calls us Home. What we can accomplish now is different than what we used to do, but God is not done with us. It is only then that we should throw in the towel – when God calls us Home.

While we cringe at how long it takes us to accomplish something, it should not matter when we now have all day to do it. While we once had days when we prayed on the run, now we can pray as we walk – or sit – or rock. Even though it’s harder to remember things than it once was, we should relish in the fact that we have time to write things down so that we don’t  forget.

Unless we are physically not able to do something, we should keep moving and keep doing – even if it takes all day to do what someone younger can accomplish in an hour.

What to do when your candle burns low and slow

Keep moving. Sitting around feeling sorry for yourself only adds to your physical and emotional troubles. Movement provides exercise, which lubricates your joints and improves muscle stamina. Add exercises to your daily routine: do squats in the bathroom before using the toilet. Walk outside or in your house with your walker or cane for ten minutes every hour. Find activities (table games, puzzles, crocheting) that combine mind and muscle when you are sedentary.

Keep investing in the Kingdom and the lives of others. God wants to keep using you in Kingdom work. Pray like you’ve never had time to pray before. Invest in missionaries by praying for them. Pray for our government, your church, and your family.  Encourage others in your church who are now doing what you used to do, before your candle burned so low and so slow. What better way to wear out than by doing Kingdom work!

Keep your faith and pass it on. When a candle burns low and slow, there are two things the candle can still do no matter how low or how slow it burns:

  1. Give light in a dark and dreary world. Don’t hide that light; shine it out there for all the world to see. Spread light in the darkness and do not stop!
  2. Light another candle. What better legacy to leave behind than to light another candle – or two, or three – that will continue to burn and shine! Use your wisdom, your gifts, your expertise to light another candle. The flame of your heart will continue to shine when your candle no longer burns.

candle burns low and slow

Credit goes to our friend John Ivan Byler for the idea for this blog. In a conversation on aging, he shared the idea that even when a candle burns low, it can still light another candle.

Photo credits: pixabay.com



2 thoughts on “When Your Candle Burns Low and Slow”

  1. This is so good, I love your admonition to shine for Jesus here.
    “What is to give light must endure burning.” Said Viktor Frankl in his book Man’s search for Meaning. As I read your blog I thought of his quote.
    The point you touched on about God using us to light others candles makes me so happy! What a privilege.
    Thanks for sharing.

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