- Respond to God's call. Many people have studied the stars over the centuries, but the wise travelers of Matthew's Gospel responded to the urge, the conviction, the feeling that something new was happening in the universe. All faith is a response. Nothing begins with us and God is working out God's purpose in our own time and in the time to come.
- Find Support! The wise travelers did not travel alone. They came in a group and were the first gentiles to acknowledge and point to the fact that Jesus came into the world for all people--to form a new community of love. In our community of love, there are those who can help us clarify God's call; there are those who have "been there" and can walk with us through the rough patches and still others who just listen -- one of the greatest gifts of all. You don't have to travel alone!
- Make the journey! The wise travelers did not stay put. They followed the star and the Gospel of Matthew says they were overwhelmed with joy when they arrived. Travel, seek, risk, ask questions, change, grow, mature. As life changes, so do the questions and opportunities. And Joy is found where we meet Jesus.
- Expect roadblocks and obstacles. When the wise travelers came to Jerusalem, they went to the palace. But instead of a King they found a despot, an anxious ruler who heard their question about the birthplace of a king as a threat. They had to go further -- to Bethlehem. In our spiritual journey, life can become more difficult as we get closer to the truth. When we are on the journey toward Jesus, the powers of darkness will try to interfere! Just ask the women of Bethlehem whose children were slain by Herod's henchmen. The Holy Innocents, whom the church remembers on December 28 are the first martyrs, the innocent lives who suffered, not because it was God's will, but out of the sin of the world. But when obstacles arise, recall the words of John the Baptist: Every Valley shall be filled and every Mountain and Hill be made low." Like entering any construction zone, slow down, but don't stop!
- Offer your gifts. Our gifts are much more than skills and abilities; much more than strength and talent. Sometimes all we have to offer is our pain and weakness. God values US -- our whole selves. Love is the building block of the universe. Remember the words of the old hymn: "What can I give him, poor as I am; if I were a shepherd I would bring a lamb; if I were a wise man, I would do my part; yet what I can I give him: give my heart." When we offer our gifts as a spiritual community responding to God's call, when we make the journey of faith and face obstacles and roadblocks, but keep going, then we all become wise travelers--making the journey of Joy as we find the presence of Christ.
from the "Holy Lady"
From time to time, the Holy Spirit moves through my thoughts
and words; I hope you enjoy these offerings!