In just one more day it will be time to celebrate the Feast of the Epiphany – are you ready for the arrival?
The Feast of the Epiphany is observed by many Christians around the world. For some, it will mean savoring Kings Cakes, jumping into the cold water, or, going to a special mass or other religious observance on Sunday.
For many, the Epiphany is the day we focus on the journey of the magi, as they followed the appearance of a star in the sky and made their way to Bethlehem to visit the Christ child. Once there, they worshiped him as a king, the king of kings, and honored him and presented him with their best gifts, three gifts fit for his royal station: gold, frankincense and myrrh.
For others, the focus of this feast is on Christ’s baptism by John the Baptist in the River Jordan, where he was, even though he was perfect, “fulfilling all righteousness.”
Regardless of one’s focus on this day, the word epiphany literally means “to show,” or “to manifest,” and both the visit of the magi and Christ’s baptism are events where his divinity and purpose on Earth are revealed, shown and made manifest. The arrival of this day has been celebrated for centuries, and was even celebrated by the early church for many decades before Christmas was even observed!
Just a few days ago, my husband and I received some unexpected, and joyous news; we are now grandparents-to-be! Our middle daughter is expecting her first child and our first grandchild, with the delivery date currently set at August 4th. To say that we are excited, is, an understatement!
This morning, I was thinking about the upcoming arrival of our expected little bundle of joy and browsing online for baby things: clothes, blankets, strollers, car seats, toys and all of the other things that she and her husband will need to be prepared for the baby’s arrival, when this thought occurred to me.
I am so excited about the arrival of this new baby in our lives, and prepared to go to such lengths to make certain that this baby has everything that he or she needs for a perfect start in this life. Just like the magi who went to great lengths to worship, honor and adore Christ, I just want to show our expected new grandchild how much he or she is loved.
But, if I am truly honest with myself, can I honestly say I’ve shown, and felt, the same amount of love, and excitement, right at this moment, about the birth of my savior and his expected arrival – because even though we can not know the exact date – he will return one day!
As this new year gets started, I find myself kneeling down in prayer and asking myself, and God, am I really prepared for the arrival of these bundles of joy – my new grandson or granddaughter to be, and, potentially, the arrival, the return, of my savior?