Today, Wednesday, January 6, is Ephiphany. This is the day set aside to remember the visit of the Magi to the Christ child.
The Magi came later than the shepherds, though our nativity pageants and home scenes rarely show this chronology. Our daughter, Lisa, never places the Wise Men near her manger scene. They can show up all around her apartment, from bedroom to kitchen, making their way to baby Jesus. We smile at her simple application. Truth be known, sometimes I am envious of it.
I have come to understand that epiphany means a “showing, a revelation, to make
known.” I have been thinking on these aspects of the word all week and how they play into the journey of the Magi and the journey I am taking.
The Magi showed themselves to Herod, asking for help.They also showed themselves to Jesus and his parents where they revealed their gifts.They made known why they came so far to Herod, who misused the information. No doubt they also made known the reason for their journey to Mary and Joseph, much to their amazement.. Because of their honest search, the angel showed himself to the Magi in a dream and revealed what they could not know any other way, that Herod would misuse their information to kill the one they had searched for. The angel made known to them that they had no choice but to break their promise to Herod and bypass him on their return home.
But think on this. God revealed himself to Gentiles who followed their best understandings to find Jesus. God showed them the way to His Son using their knowledge of astrology. God made known to these secular scientists who believed they could decipher truth from the stars, that there was more truth than stars could share. God opened a way for the Gentiles to find Jesus. The opening was all God’s doing, not the Magi’s.
As we begin a new year, let’s pray for epiphanies. Let’s look for God openings. Let’s take a studied road that makes use of what we know but never stops there. Let’s expect God to meet us more than half-way so that we are never dependent on what we know. Let’s trust a God who took Gentiles all the way to Jesus using their understanding of stars and wonder what he will use to take us to Jesus. Let’s treat some of the mixed up people on our prayer lists like Magi on a journey that God can direct, that God is directing. And let’s start expecting that the God of this universe, the God of all knowledge can make an opening anywhere He wants.
May you experience epiphany
As God shows himself to you
reveals the way you should go
And makes known His truth to you
Epiphany blessings be yours!