We are in the season of Epiphany, which is a lovely church season. We need not get sad that the deeper meaning of Christmas is over because it continues into this season in a magical way. We leave the characters of the crib scene up because the Christian feast of Epiphany commemorates the mysterious visitors who came to the Christ child. The word used for the visitors has been translated as magi, wise men, kings or astrologers.
The visitors brought gifts, which symbolised Jesus’ identity: precious gold, linked with kingship; frankincense, a fragrant resin linked with divinity and holiness; myrrh – another resin with a bitter perfume associated with anointing for burial or suffering and mourning. The colours of Epiphany are white and gold. The season carries on through four Sundays and ends at Candlemas. That’s when we have our magical christingle service in the afternoon.
Epiphany means ‘to show’, ‘to make known’ or ‘to reveal’. So perhaps we can look into those encounters we have for the mystery of the season that guides us to know Jesus more deeply. As we go forward let us follow a new path with the new Spirit of hope that the newborn King brings to us.
As the New Year begins let us think about the gifts we bring to God, as we watch for his signs and listen for where he wants us to go as visitors. As we look ahead on the exciting journey our church is about to embark on we will thrive if we seek God’s vision. What part will we play in bringing our gifts to our church and community? Perhaps through the skills that we can offer to our local church we will reveal the love and the light of Christ. I believe we all have a part to play in God’s plan. In order to reveal the light we need to peel of a few barriers to seeing it. Sometimes we need to shake of a few obstacles or excuses and leave behind our doubts and fears and just follow God’s path for us like the Magi did.
One of the most familiar symbols in the Gospel is light and life, at the start of the Gospel of John “…in him was life, and the life was the light of all people. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.” So let’s carry the beacon of faith on our path ahead this year and be brave. There amongst us will be his everlasting light; the good news of Christ can help us and also to welcome and comfort others to journey on.
Come along and collect your Christingle on Sunday 27th January at 4pm to remind yourself his light is with you. You are all a part of the wonderful gift of worship and of each other in God’s church here at The Holy Redeemer, Lamorbey.
May his light shine in your heart and guide you to him.
Rev. Mell Jemmett