Tonight I’m gazing into the beautiful glow of my Christmas tree for one last night. I always leave it up and decorated until after Epiphany, which was yesterday. The Christmas season doesn’t officially end until then, and it is perhaps my favorite part of the season. It’s a more peaceful time when the greatest gift of Jesus has already been revealed and I am left in quiet gratitude. Epiphany seems to be almost forgotten to most people in the festivities of Christmas and New Years, but it is a day of great significance. How does celebrating Epiphany, the day when the magi presented their gifts to the baby Jesus, apply to us today in the 21st century? I recently saw a slogan that said, “wise men still seek Him.” Epiphany reminds us that we too, must still seek Him. We need to find ways to draw nearer to God each day. But what do we do if we cannot find Him?
It’s not always easy to find God. He is revealed in the most unlikely of places and we need to be able to recognize Him. God became flesh and was born in a simple stable. Today, we need to understand that God is found even among the homeless, the poor and the outcast. During the difficult times in our lives, it may seem like God is lost, but I believe it is we who are lost. What can we do when we cannot find the way?
I recently traveled with friends who had a GPS to navigate our route and I was so impressed with this small yet ingenious device that I was the recipient of one of my own. I’ve always said I could get lost in a paper bag, so to have one of these tools provides me with a great deal of comfort. Whenever we decided to take a turn that was contrary to the GPS and to go our own way, it would immediately begin to recalculate a route to get us back on track. In fact, no matter how many times we decided to go off-course, it would quickly bring us back to a route that would lead us to our destination. With the help of the GPS we didn’t have to know exactly how to get to our final destination, but we were guided like the magi, by an unknown source.
The magi didn’t know exactly where they were going, but they knew Who they were going to see. We may not know where we are always going, but we know Who is guiding us. God wants to be our GPS and no matter how many times we may go off course or try to go our own way, He will quickly recalculate a new route for us and bring us safely to our destination. And unlike a regular GPS that needs re-charging, God’s power is continuous. With God’s guidance we will never be lost and He will provide us with lasting comfort and peace.
As I reflect on the blessings of Christmas and Epiphany, I am filled with awe and gratitude that God cared enough about you and I to make a way for His Son to enter the world. I am inspired by the magi who followed in faith to find the miracle of Christmas and pray that I too, will follow in faith where God leads me. This New Year, may we all let God direct our journeys and make a space for His grace in our lives.