I had hoped to write a piece on the delightful contrast of Silver and Blue or White and Blue – winter colors for me. Contrasts that when held together present as beauty. Or does the beauty glisten through the contrast – seeing both colors for what they are, as separate and equal, as well as seeing them for what they are together, as complimentary and creating a “new thing” by coming together.
For now, I’ll invite you to explore that thought for yourself. My time and energy has been focused on caring for my parents, especially my father who is recovering from a broken hip and hip surgery.
I offer you one of Rev. David Lose’s devotions on the second chapter of Matthew’s Gospel; Magi, Herod, violence, the holy Family becoming refugees. Lots there to consider: contrasting characters, evil and innocent… separate and equal. Maybe we are to see them for what they are together, as complimentary and creating a “new thing” by coming together? Or perhaps, God created the New Thing to help us see the contrast and find equal yet complimentary ways to address the evil in our day.
Grace and Peace,
In the Meantime…Where Faith Meets Real Life
by: Rev. David Lose
Devotional on Matthew 2:9-11
It’s easy to hear this story as an example of our proper response to Jesus. When the star – whether the invitation of a neighbor, a chance reading of Scripture, that little nudge that won’t go away – finally draws to us encounter Jesus, we too should bow in worship, open our hearts, and offer what gifts we have.
That’s a good way to read this story, taking the magi as our example.
But we might also read the story the other way around, not only paying attention to what we should do, but what God has already done. For from the very beginning of Jesus’ life, God is reaching out to all people. These magi are three persons who come from another country and return again. They are likely astrologers who worship in another religion and presumably continue to do so. They are as different from most of the rest of the characters in Matthew’s story about Jesus as you can imagine. Except in one respect. They are children of God and God draws them to witness the grace and mercy dawning from on high in the birth and life of Jesus.
Matthew’s Gospel in many ways is considered the most “Jewish” of the four in that he writes for a Jewish audience, tries to demonstrate that Jesus is God’s Messiah from the Jewish Scriptures, and for this reason consciously and consistently makes links between Jesus’ ministry and the Jewish law and prophets. But here, in these opening chapters, Matthew makes it clear that Jesus comes for all. Accepts all. Saves all. Loves all.
So, yes, this story of the three magi offers an example of how we might respond to Jesus. And it also – and I’d argue more importantly – shows us one of countless examples of how God loves everyone. Period.
Prayer: Dear God, let us remember that your love is for all, and knowing that you love us, empower us to love others as you do. In Jesus’ name, Amen.