This Sunday, we will celebrate Epiphany at our church. The gospel reading is always the story of the magi or wise men who travelled a great distance to visit Jesus.
Contrary to Christmas greeting cards and pageant stories, many Biblical scholars suggest that those “star watchers” did not find an infant baby lying in a manger, but rather their journey took months, perhaps even a couple of years. By the time they reached Jesus, he could have been a child of at least one and a half to two years old.
I have wondered about those travelers whose business it was to gaze at stars – how they came to leave their familiar lives to journey hundreds of miles in search of something new and transformative. We often do the same, don’t we? Sometimes we travel physically, but other times our bodies remain where we are—but we have to move spiritually, emotionally, and psychologically.
As we head into this new year, I’m thinking about the kinds of shifts that might be necessary in order for me to live into the best version of myself. How can I be intentional and purposeful about the changes I wish to see? Like you, I don’t know what lies ahead. My guess is that there will be the same configurations as every other year—good times and bad; joys and sorrows; gains and losses; life and death; shattered dreams and new, unexplainable, and unanticipated dreams unfolding.
This is the promise and our blessed hope: God travels the road with us, and each day’s journey gets us closer to the One who keeps calling to us.
If we follow the star (the light of Christ), there will be many epiphanies to guide our way. We’ll have to pay attention and be willing to offer ourselves as the magi did, but there will be moments of God’s grace breaking in on us that will take our breath away and leave us filled with awe and wonder. I’m sure of it.
Grace and peace,