You might start your day with a Reese’s cup at breakfast, have a Snickers at lunch, enjoy some Peanut M&Ms to combat the afternoon slump, and finish with a couple of Sour Patch Kids after dinner. This day, and perhaps this week, you might indulge in more “treats” than usual. Whether it’s due to the parental “candy tax” or the lure of grocery store sales, it’s important to remember the significance of today.
November 1st is All Saints Day, also known as All Hallows’ Day. Traditionally, on this day, believers honor and remember all the saints, both the well-known and unsung heroes, who have lived lives of unwavering faith and embodied God’s love and grace. It’s a day to celebrate the unity among followers of Jesus and to reflect on the lives of those who’ve come before us, leaving a legacy of faith, hope, and love.
As you indulge in a Whopper or two, take a moment to think of those who dedicated their lives to spreading the Gospel to unreached nations and peoples worldwide. People like William Carey, the Father of Modern Missions, who proclaimed the Gospel in India and worked on translating the Bible into Bengali. Or Adoniram and Ann Judson, the first American missionaries to serve overseas in Burma, leading thousands to Christ. And Lottie Moon, who served as a single woman in China and raised awareness about global mission efforts in America.
But don’t forget those whose lives played a pivotal role in your own faith journey, even if they seem less “adventurous”. I think of Ms. Billie, the kind old lady at my childhood church whose faithful attendance and never-ending supply of candy from her purse provided a sense of steadfast kindness that I came to associate with the people of God. I recall Mrs. Turner, my 5th-grade assistant teacher, who showed me the patience and love of Jesus, even during my rebellious moments, and encouraged my faith from a young age. And I happily remember my sweet Grandmother, the matriarch of our family, who instilled faith in her children and left a legacy of a family devoted to Jesus in their homes, churches, and communities.
This week, as you enjoy your candy and take advantage of sales, take a moment to reflect on those who’ve come before you. Just as each candy has its unique style and flavor, so do the beloved saints who have their unique stories and legacies. They remind us of the sweetness of faith, the richness of hope, and the enduring love of God. Amid the candy wrappers, remember the lives and teachings of those who have left earthly life and a legacy that continues to inspire and motivate us to love God more. May we find moments to savor and reflect in gratitude and celebration on this All Saints Day, and may we be encouraged to live in a way that leaves a legacy for others to love Jesus.