Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Starry Night

Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the east came to Jerusalem, saying, “Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.” When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him; and assembling all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Christ was to be born. They told him, “In Bethlehem of Judea, for so it is written by the prophet:“‘And you, O Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for from you shall come a ruler who will shepherd my people Israel.’”
Then Herod summoned the wise men secretly and ascertained from them what time the star had appeared. And he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, “Go and search diligently for the child, and when you have found him, bring me word, that I too may come and worship him.” After listening to the king, they went on their way. And behold, the star that they had seen when it rose went before them until it came to rest over the place where the child was. When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy. And going into the house they saw the child with Mary his mother, and they fell down and worshiped him. Then, opening their treasures, they offered him gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh. And being warned win a dream not to return to Herod, they departed to their own country by another way. Matthew 2:1-12

One of the wondrous things about living here is that we are far from any major source of light, like a city, and so the night sky is full of stars and planets visible to the naked eye. Last night was overcast, but most nights, we can stand on our deck or on the beach and stare up at countless stars witnessing the beauty of the heavens. They seems so close some nights, as if they draw close and near, as if they have a story to tell, as if they want to share something with us.

The wise men who followed the star were learned and serious men who knew how to listen to the story the stars were whispering, and they saw and heard a great tale and came out of their comfortable and familiar surroundings to seek the child.Their quest was not in vane and they worshiped the little child they would never know, except for in story and legend. They knew how to listen, and when they were ready to go home they listened again and found another way home.

Tod ask God to help me to listen, to the world around me and to the heart of God. I pray that we can all use the gifts and skills we have been given to understand the truth and beauty that surrounds us and to share God's love with a world starved for a renewed sense of hope and expectation.

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