Are your lights on or off?

What are the elements of your yearly Christmas preparations? Do you decorate your house? Do you put up a tree? Do you plan lots of family events? Do you play Christmas music on a continuous loop?

Like all families, we have a number of traditions in our house as well and one of them seems to be struggling to get the Christmas lights to work.

It seems that no matter how careful I am, when I turn on the lights after positioning them throughout the tree, one or more ‘sections’ of the lights will fail to work.

This year out of 160 LED lights about 40 were not flashing in the way they were designed.

Now before you try to teach me your particular method of ‘sucking eggs’ let me say this… because of previous experience I did turn the lights all on to test them before I hung them. The problem is that when they are all together and flashing it is very difficult to work out that a small number of them are not in fact working.

It is not until they are spread out on the tree in relative isolation, that you realise that you have a problem.

Christmas lights work in sections – they are wired in a particular way which means that if one light in that section fails, then all of the lights in that section fail. One break in a wire, one bad connection, will lead to the problem that I was experiencing. The biggest challenge is in finding the offending light that is causing the failure – finding a broken green wire in the midst of a green Christmas tree whose lights are flashing on and off, is by far the hardest part – usually the issue is easy to resolve but unless you find it you can’t make a difference.

My life (and yours I’m sure) bears resemblance to these strings of Christmas lights which adorn trees, cover houses and line the corridors of our shopping centres. They are a good illustration for us – I know that if one aspect of my life fails or gets ‘disconnected’ then it impacts other aspects. My work impacts my family; my relationships impact my sense of satisfaction; my fitness (or fatness) impacts how I relate to others and the Spiritual dimension of my life effects my sense of direction and purpose.

So I hope that all of your lights are currently on and shining bright…if not maybe it is time to make some adjustments and reconnect!


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