On Sunday, January 6th, 2019, we will be celebrating Epiphany Sunday. Epiphany is one of our oldest Christian feasts. It is celebrated 12 days after Christmas, and is commonly called the Twelfth Night, the Twelfth Day, or the Feast of Epiphany. Epiphany means ‘manifestation” or “showing forth”.
On Epiphany Sunday, we remember and celebrate the first of two occasions on which Jesus’ divinity was manifested or ‘shown’. The first occasion was when the three kings visited the infant Jesus in Bethlehem, adoring him. The story of the King’s visit illustrates that Jesus is the King of all kings who came for all of humanity – the Jews and the Gentiles. The second occasion on which Jesus’ divinity was manifested, or ‘shown’ was when John the Baptist baptized Jesus in the River Jordan. I will be focussing on this scripture passage on January 13th, Baptism of Jesus Sunday.
Today, as I reflect on the gifts presented to Jesus by the Kings - gold, frankincense, and myrrh – I wonder what it is that I will give Jesus this year. To give him my very heart means that I am giving him every aspect of who I am – all that I am – which includes all my strengths and weaknesses. It means that when I give my heart to Jesus, he is then able to help me live out the peace and compassion he gifts to me to share with others. Ultimately the gifts Jesus gives to me – hope, peace, joy, and love – are not mine to hoard, but to use to create God’s realm here on earth. These gifts from God illume my way, and change my life to a path of love, acceptance, compassion, and caring which reflect God’s realm here on earth. This is a good vision to start the New Year with.
I am interested in hearing from you, and listening to your thoughts about Epiphany and the sharing of gifts between God and us.