Today’s Gospel: Matthew 2:1-12
It is the feast of Epiphany today, a feast where we honor and celebrate three mysterious wise men. These wealthy Gentiles are a fascinating enigma. Their story seems the stuff of tall tales, so outrageous it must be true. Only the promptings of the Living God could entice such educated men to follow a mysterious star for countless miles, deal prudently with the devious King Herod, worship a mere baby, and heed a mystical warning to avoid alerting a king.
The wise men are courageous. They venture into the unknown, following a star of all things, into a foreign land with enough sensitivity to listen to the inner prompting of the Holy Spirit even though they are not Jewish.
They have enough humility to prostrate themselves and actually worship an impoverished human newborn in the confines of a stable full of animals and, surely, the smell of manure.
It is not within their spiritual tradition to worship a human, never mind an infant, yet they are able to acknowledge that this rogue star, which has settled over a rustic stable, signifies an event of cosmic significance. Their hearts and souls are open enough to sense the presence of the Divine in a mortal baby and shower him with riches.
In comparison to these ancient “heathens,” we do not fare that well.
Could we conceivably envision ourselves leaving all that is safe and comfortable to trek across a barren desert in search of the elusive Truth?
Would we be willing to embrace the incredible without question?
Would we be astute enough to even recognize the Divine in such an unusual place?
Most importantly, would we be willing to worship a newborn as the Creator of the Universe, disguised as a tiny, swaddled bundle of helplessness without the benefit of teaching and tradition?
Can we shake ourselves out of our spiritual ruts long enough to listen to the Living God? Let us be open to the joy of fresh revelations in a vibrant relationship with a God who yearns to teach us.
Have mercy on us, oh Lord, and instill a humble, teachable spirit within us.
Copyright 2018 Melanie Jean Juneau
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