Pondering for Friday, January 6, 2023

Eucharistic Readings for Epiphany: All Years

Isaiah 60:1-6Psalm 72:1-7,10-14; Ephesians 3:1-12Matthew 2:1-12:

“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.” (Matthew 2: 1 and 2)

We are all born into some kind of human culture.  Most cultures are primarily predominated by something we have come to recognize as “race.” Too often too many of us develop a shameful pride with regard to whatever race we claim to be.  This is sad. Race is a human construct, not a Godly one.

The Wise Men (or Magi) were primarily astronomers who gazed up at the stars.  They noticed any irregularities occurring in the heavens and maybe even conferred amongst themselves the meaning of any strange happenings.  How they knew a star, or particular shining light, was the signal of a  Jewish infant-king, we will perhaps never know.  What we do know is that these men (most probably men, we don’t know how many and we shouldn’t let the three gifts limit the number of men), sought out this king regardless of whatever his ethnicity or race might be. Perhaps this is what made them “wise.”

They saw a divine light that must have been distinguished from regular stars and planets. It was so precise that it could specifically indicate the place where the child was living.  No star up in the heavens, no matter how bright could stop, and then be low enough to the earth to point to a specific dwelling place. This divine light pointed to the Moral Light of the world.

During this season of Epiphany let us not worry about who we are ethnically, but rather, seek out our Lord Jesus wherever, and whoever he might be.  We are still called to follow that light, that moral light, that leads us to that moral high-ground where we treat each other, all others with dignity and respect regardless of their socio-economic status, national origin, language, sexual orientation, gender, religion, lack of religion, or race.  The other only needs to be human and therefore made in God’s Image.

Please keep up your thoughts and prayers and hopes for Ukraine, Iran and China.

 “Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all their multitude. And on the seventh day God finished the work that he had done, and he rested on the seventh day from all the work that he had done” (Genesis 2:1 and 2). So, for this evening and tomorrow day my friends, Shabbat Shalom. 

What is Shabbat? Intro to the Jewish Sabbath – YouTube

As we listen to what the Spirit is saying to us, let us live to love and serve, and to teach others to love and serve, while pondering anew what the Almighty can do. John

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