Today we continue our celebration of the birth of the Son of God. But, more than the birth, we celebrate the manifestation of the Divine Child as the Light of the world and Universal Savior. The scene of the Magi who undertake the journey in search of the Born King, reminds us of our own journey in search of the Lord; search that culminates with the joy of the encounter with the King of the universe.
The truth about the newborn King is obvious: He came to save us and to all who accept Him, He gives the power to become children of God. Two things are however to be considered here. For one, the Joy that fills the hearts of the Magi at the sight of the Child indicates the joy of the whole world welcoming and adoring the King who comes to make everything new. Today we are also invited to join in the celebration of that joy. Jesus is revealed to us as the One who comes to pull us out darkness. While we were still blinded by sins and our focus on the ephemera and illusory joy that the world offers us, true Light is given to us as now Jesus finds us in our struggles. He comes to us to call us to embark on the new journey of light and joy. His star rose for us too and made us sharers of the new creation.
The second thing we are to consider is the change – I will say, the transformation, conversion and metanoia – that occurs in the Magi’s journey. They are warned not to take the same path. Scripture says, they took another path on their way back, after being warned not to. This is the consequence of and the requirement that comes from the encounter with the Light of the World. To encounter Jesus is and should always be a source of renewal. Renewal of the ways we had treated one another; renewal of our view of the world, and renewal of our own identity as children of God and disciples of Jesus. It is exactly that renewal at the encounter of the Lord that made Saint Paul claim that “my present life in faith, it is no longer I who live but Christ living in me.” After a time of darkness and uncertainty, the Magi are guided to the newborn King. They find Him and they adore Him offering Him their presents.
Time and again we get lost on our journey of discipleship. Trust in God should always lead us in perseverance to find the light that leads us to the Savior. Our encounter with Him is our response to His call, as we say, “here am I Lord, I came to do your will.” This journey we do not undertake it alone. We journey as a family and community. In the beginning of the new year, I would like all of us to hold one another to journey together in the spirit of a synodal Church, where everyone is a part of the family on pilgrimage to the fulfillment of the Kingdom of God.
As we thank God for the blessing of this New Year, we ask Him to strengthen us in the spirit of discipleship, so that holding one another, we may journey together for the building of the Kingdom where all are welcomed and cherished. And let us continue to pray for one another and for our parish family. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all and everyone!