Skip to main content

Epiphany 2018

"As we observe Epiphany, we celebrate the journey to the manger and the showing forth of God in unexpected places."- Transforming Center 

How have you seen or experienced light? 
How have you shared light with others? 

you are both guidance and mystery, 
Visit our rest with disturbing dreams, 
and our journeys with strange companions. 
Grace us with the hospitality 
to open our hearts and homes 
to visitors filled with unfamiliar wisdom 
bearing profound and unusual gifts. 

Bright Morning Star, 
your light has come, 
and the birth of Jesus 
has overwhelmed us with joy. 
Like the magi of long ago, 
may we be drawn to you 
and offer you such gifts as we are able.

O God of light and peace, 
whose glory, shining in the child of Bethlehem, 
still draws the nations to yourself: 
dispel the darkness that shrouds our path, 
that we may come 
to kneel before Christ in true worship, 
offer him our hearts and souls, 
and return from his presence to live as he has taught.

The season of Epiphany extends from January 6 until Ash Wednesday and the start of Lent.  My friend Robert Benson wrote this:   
"Now the season of looking for Him everywhere is upon us — the season of Epiphany is what they call it.  Heads up. Keep your eyes and ears and hands open. He is everywhere, and He moves in pretty surprising ways. You do not want to miss Him." 

Dream of the Magi (2001) by Qi He in China
(professor at the Nanjing Union Theological Seminary and a tutor for master candidate students in the Philosophy Department of Nanjing University. He is also a member of the China Art Association and a council member of the Asian Christian Art Association.) 

Adoration of the Child, Arrival of the Magi  (mid 4th century) - Rome, Italy 


Popular posts from this blog

Gumdrop Tree

In my family growing up, my grandmother had a gumdrop tree.  My mother had a gumdrop tree.  And when I got married, I was given a gumdrop tree at a Christmas wedding shower.  The first one I had was a chintzy see-through plastic tree that was in a box that said "money tree".  I guess some people tied money to the branches as a way to give cash as a gift.  But in our family, this small plastic object was pulled out each year and gumdrops were stuck to the ends of the branches.  The bottom tray held a bunch of gumdrops under the tree for the extras that would not fit on the branches. I loved my daily ritual in December of passing by the gumdrop tree that was placed in the hallway outside the kitchen and of snatching a few gumdrops.  (Note to anyone who tries this: You can always conceal your snacking by restocking the empty branches with gumdrops from the tray. Your real challenge comes when the tray is empty. Good luck on that one.)  Here's the description I

Taylor's Crossing

Our boy is turning 13 this month so we've been intentional about trying to create something that would fit his personality and that would speak to his heart to help mark this "crossing" year.  We did a more elaborate version of this for his sister, Anna, but he made it very clear that he did not want the same kind of  pageantry.   As we thought about how to tweak some of our ideas that we'd put in place before, we still had some of the same goals that we'd had for Anna.  The ultimate message that we wanted him to hear and remember was that he is loved. One small thing we did in preparation to drive this home was that we had him memorize Psalm 139 over a period of a few months as this passage is a beautiful reminder of God's love for us and His presence with us.   We also wanted Taylor to know that as he turned from 12 to 13 into the realm of being a teenager that he was not doing this alone. We wanted him to know that he has a team of people

Rite of Passage

This text above deserves some background....  When Anna was in 6th grade or so, we went a fabulous talk that Julie Metzgar gave at Children's Hospital about puberty.  The talk was presented under a program called "Great Conversations" and is tagged as one that is for "helping preteens and their families in conversations about body changes, sex and other growing-up stuff."   During one of the talks about girls getting their periods, Julie Metzgar showed slides of girls in villages around the world where the girls are honored and highly esteemed when they get their first periods.  This rite of passage  is celebrated as girls are preparing for their roles as women.  In some cultures, these celebrations are as lavish as weddings and they are significant markers for the young women and their families.  Rather than whisper about this behind closed doors and pretend that nothing has happened, Julie encouraged us to talk to our daughters about somethi