Epiphany of the Lord
Ephesians 3:2-3, 5-6
Today all the Christmas decorations will be taken down and stored away for another year. When we gather again next week, we will be back in Ordinary Time. Before all the decorations get stored away, we need to realize the many Epiphanies that happen in our lives and how are we going to respond to them, like King Herod or the Magi?
In our Gospel, we heard the story of the Epiphany. We may understand epiphany as this “aha” moment when all things become radiantly clear to us. I do not want to diminish these moments because they do happen and we need to act on them. However, this is not what is happening in our Gospel story about the Epiphany. In our spiritual lives, we want Epiphanies to happen, and a greater chance of a life-changing Epiphany is when we do what the Magi did in our Gospel today. The first epiphany to happen when the Magi realized something was stirring within them, which called them to something more in their life. They allowed that desire to come out and then they looked to the second Epiphany which was to look to the star that led them to the Christ Child. Both things had to happen to arrive at the Christ Child.
Perhaps a couple of examples to make this more clear. Epiphanies are going on all the time in our lives. I believe there is someone here now who has a stirring in their heart to a vocation. The Epiphany or calling needs to come out and be explored as you look to Christ to lead you to what he wants you to do.
There also the Epiphany of someone who has done something that bothers them, there may be guilt, shame, or maybe embarrassment around this event. The Epiphany is allow this to come out as you look to Christ to lead you where he wants you to be.
The Epiphanies of our lives need to be decided either King Herod of by the Magi. King Herod did not address the Epiphany in his life very well. He allowed fear to overcome him. He allowed that fear to become a threat and he did not face this fear as evidence of he sent others, the Magi to do his work. Unfortunately, this is what we do time and again. The Magi faced their Epiphany in a manner we should. The magi took that epiphany in their soul, and they allowed it to be explored, and they looked to the star to guide them to Christ. The Magi did whatever it took to get there, and they brought their very best gifts.
As this manger scene gets put away for another year, will we be able to decide how we will respond to the Epiphany in our lives? Will we allow what is stirring for us to come out? Will we look to Christ for the direction we need? The gift of Epiphany is there is something wonderful waiting for us at the end of our journey!