Relax and clear your head. Listen for the voice of God. What is God saying to you today? Turn off your cell phone, TV, or radio. Listen to the silence that is around you. Listen for God to speak to you.
Matthew 2:1-12 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
In the time of King Herod, after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea, wise men from the East came to Jerusalem, asking, “Where is the child who has been born king of the Jews? For we observed his star at its rising, and have come to pay him homage.” When King Herod heard this, he was frightened, and all Jerusalem with him; and calling together all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Messiah was to be born. They told him, “In Bethlehem of Judea; for so it has been written by the prophet:
‘And you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah,
are by no means least among the rulers of Judah;
for from you shall come a ruler
who is to shepherd my people Israel.’”
Then Herod secretly called for the wise men and learned from them the exact time when the star had appeared. Then he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, “Go and search diligently for the child; and when you have found him, bring me word so that I may also go and pay him homage.” When they had heard the king, they set out; and there, ahead of them, went the star that they had seen at its rising, until it stopped over the place where the child was. When they saw that the star had stopped, they were overwhelmed with joy. On entering the house, they saw the child with Mary, his mother; and they knelt down and paid him homage. Then, opening their treasure chests, they offered him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. And having been warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they left for their own country by another road.
In this Gospel passage, we see how revelation or epiphany manifests itself in the motives of the Maji and King Herod. Everyone is seeking for something. The light has dawned and invites us to seek in humility. The light also exposes the hearts of humanity and may cause some to try and extinguish the light. This is the choice we all face today. We can be like Herod and seek to extinguish, or we can be like the Wise and live in the light.
This also helps to remind us that we can not control the events of history or the hearts of humanity. Our job is not to get results. Our jobs are to be faithful. We are to be diligent searchers of truth. The wise men will not be judged because they were the beginning of King Herod’s planned infanticide. They will be judged on their honest searching for Jesus Christ. We, too, will be judged on our faithfulness in seeking Jesus, not because others reject or ignore the King.
God, help us to be faithful searchers of you. Give us the courage to proclaim your Good News of love, forgiveness, and belonging. Amen.
Go with God!