Sunday, 5 January 2014

Epiphany Sunday

Prayer:  Holy God,  we bow before You today in awe and majesty.  We bow before You today in worship.  As the Wise Men of old,  we lay before You our gifts that You have given to us.   Holy God,  Holy Mighty,  Holy Immortal One,  You are our God and we are Your people.  Let us rejoice in Your love this day.  Amen. 
Epiphany is  celebrated the Sunday closest to 6 January.   This is the day in the Church year when we remember the  Wise Men bringing gifts to the infant  Christ Child.     Tradition states that there were three Wise Men as that was the number of gifts brought to the Infant Christ Child.    In our household,  we always chuckle and say there were actually four  Wise Men.  Three  Wise Men brought gifts for the Infant and the fourth Wise Man was Presbyterian and didn't believe in the commercialism of buying and giving gifts.  :)      Bad joke aside,  what matters most here isn't the number of Wise Men but their example.      From far away,  something caught their attention so much that they travelled for miles and days.   It was a star in the sky that caught their attention.   This star had great meaning for them.  They knew that this star was  foretold as being the star that would shine in the east to announce the birth of the king of the Jews.   
When they found  Jesus with his mother Mary at his side.   The Wise Men bowed down and worshipped him.  Then the Wise Men opened their treasures and  presented Jesus with gifts.   And what interesting gifts they presented.  Gold,  Frankincense,   and Myrrh.   A metal,  incense,  and  an herb.  All these are used during times of death to prepare a body for burial.   Yet  these are also gifts of life and used during the celebrations and ceremonies of the Jewish Calendar.   
Put yourself in the foot steps of the Wise Men today.  Would you be willing to travel  to worship the Christ Child?   How dedicated would you be on your journey?    As we stand at the beginning of this new year,  ponder how we will dedicate this year as a year of journeying in Christ -- in biblical knowledge,  in prayer,  in worship,  in meditation.   
What gifts  has God given to you that you can share with others this year?    How will you continue to develop and share your gifts with others this year?

Prayer:  Great God,  who by the leading of a star did bring the gift of Your Infant Son  to everyone.   We thank You that You gave us the example of the Wise men--  of seeking and finding Your Holy Son.  May  we spend this day  pondering on Your Holy Gift and what  gifts we have that we can share with others this day and through this year.   This we ask in Your Holy Son's  name.  Amen.

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