3rd Sunday in Ordinary Time
Do you remember as a kid walking around outside in the dark, seeing something move in the shadows and then freezing in horror - you tried hard to focus on it, sometimes you were convinced it was moving, sometimes you were convinced it couldn't be - your imagination running wild...then other shadows and objects seem to start moving...only to come back the next morning, in the full light of day, to find that it was something as harmless as a pine tree or as simple as a fencepost?
In the darkness many things become confusing and uncertain - we think we see or understand something, we draw conclusions that seem to make sense in the darkness, only to realize in the light of day that the truth is quite different. In the readings today Jesus fulfills an age-old prophecy from Isaiah and enters the lands of Zebulun and Naphtali, historically dark and gloomy (from the perspective of faith in God), in order to bring the light. As Christians, we are called to follow Christ and bring the light to places of darkness and confusion in our culture. Those in the darkness become pretty convinced that they are correct in their deductions, but it is our call as Christians to bring the bright the light of day, the truth, to seemingly difficult and controversial contemporary issues. Christ came to bring the light, and we are Christ-ians - let's live up to our name at least one more time than usual this week!
Today three wise men/three kings/three magi arrive at the place where Jesus was born after following the sign of a star. The presence of these three non-Jewish kings shows that God is calling not only the Jewish people but ALL people of the world to believe in and follow His Son Jesus. God’s sign was a star; everyone can see the stars. So why is it only these three wise men who followed that star? Was everyone else just too busy? Were they so caught up in life that they didn’t even notice the sign? We encounter three different kinds of people in the Gospel today: those who don’t notice the sign, those who notice the sign but don’t follow it, and those who notice the sign AND follow it. This week: What are the signs God is placing in your life (what are the stars)? And when you see a sign, do you follow it?