There are two ways of spreading light: to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it.
~ Edith Wharton
I received an email this morning which began with this quote and I was struck by its simplicity. "There are two ways of spreading light: to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it." I have had these words rolling around in my head since reading it. I wonder how often am I the candle and how often am I the light.
Being the candle means sharing my "light" with those around me. This light can be positive or negative. I can choose to be positive, encouraging, loving, giving, patient and understanding or I can choose to be negative, hurtful, angry or even vengeful. The candle light from both of these options will affect everyone I come in contact with and may affect how they shine their light on those in their lives as well. A candle's light can illuminate and show the way or it can burn and damage all that is around it.
As a parent, I pray I have been both a beautiful light and mirror for my children. I have always attempted to do my best to teach them the valuable life lessons they need to live positive, loving, joy filled, successful lives. But they also have seen my light dim and flicker as I struggled with hurt, anger and disappointment. Those times did not reflect the light I wished for them but they were no less valuable lessons. My children have done well and I am very proud of the young adults they have become. I have been both the candle, showing them the way and the mirror, living by example. I have done my best.
My hope is that I live my life with a loving, positve, joyful outlook that allows my candle to shine as a bright and beautiful light illuminating the way for those around me and that my mirror reflects the same allowing others to see themselves as I see them.
How will your light be reflected?