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Monday, December 26, 2011

The Second Day of Christmas, All is Well

It's the second day of Christmas. Our home is quiet tonight.  Elyse has gone to stay with my parents for several days.  Candles are lit; the house smells like sugar cookies and mint chocolate truffle.  Not because I'm baking, but because I'm addicted to scented candles. I've just finished the dishes and have settled in with a hot cup of mocha cappuccino.  I will probably be up all night, after this indulgence, but for now, I am content.

The wise men have made their way to our family room.  They haven't reached the baby yet. It's not yet their time.  They are holding their gifts ... gold, frankincense, and myrrh... extravagant gifts in those days.

*Gold has obvious worth across ages and cultures.  This baby that they sought was to be a King.
*Frankincense, with its soothing and restorative qualities, was used to treat depression in that era.  When burned as incense, it was believed to carry prayers to heaven.  This child was to be a Priest.  

*Myrrh, with its strong antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties, was used to heal wounds.  It was also used as an embalming agent, and was one of the spices used in Jesus' own burial.  This child was to die in order to heal his broken people; this child was to be a Savior.

The magi will essentially be with us throughout the Epiphany Season, which runs from Jan. 6, until Mardi Gras, (February 21 this year).  The three kings will have their last hurrah on Mardi Gras, (the last day of the Epiphany season), in the form of the beads that we are all familiar for Frankincense, purple for myrrh, and ...well...the gold is obvious.

Did you know that there is a connection between the Three Wise Men and Mardi Gras?  There's more, but we'll get to that later.  All good things in their season.

For now, they are searching.  Searching for the child who will be, ..the child who is,... King, Priest, and Savior. They need him.They are broken, human, mortal.  They are not liberated ...and so, they search.

They are not left without guidance. They have a star to follow. It is no dim star either.  Bright and clear, it is a significant abberation from the normal, work-a-day, night sky.  They have been given direction.  Taken together with the prophecies, it is a clear indication of where their path should lead.  They are not alone; they have the Word of God.

The child waits.  He'll have a bit of waiting to do, but eventually, they will arrive and fall down to worship him.  They will drink from his strength, Kingly power, and healing.  He is worth the searching.

They will arrive on Epiphany,... in our liturgical drama,... and the season of Epiphany will begin to unfold.

We are searching too, aren't we?  Searching for a closer relationship with him?  Searching for ways to conform our lives to his will?  Don't we wish to worship him, glorify him?...To give him the gift of a Christian life lived well?  The gift of our hearts in allegiance to his perfect will?

Our walk with Christ this Liturgical year has only just begun.  Put on your walking shoes. Choose comfortable socks, make sure you have a durable carrying bag for your Bible, and hold tightly to your's a rousing journey!

Praying You Blessings,
Pax Christi,

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  1. I love this tradition! I have not heard that Epiphany extends to Mardi Gras. What a wonderful way to keep Christ in sight. Lovely, lovely post.

  2. Beautiful post, Michelle, and very informative too. Thank you for sharing. I agree. Most of us are searching for a closer relationship with Him.
    Christmas blessings,

  3. I love the history lesson. Makes me want to continue the Christmas Story through Mardi Gras - what an awesome lesson for my boys! BTW - I love candles, too! Wishing you a blessed Epiphany season!

  4. I love this lesson on the Magi. Thank you for sharing with NOBH. And for reminding me, yet again, of the many layers of the Christmas story. Smiles -

  5. I never knew the traditional Mardi Gras colors...only the New Orleanian ones, which are: purple = justice, green = faith, gold = power. I think I like yours better. :)

  6. It is a great lesson to be taken through the history of the gifts and the connections! I love the Bible ~ so rich in every way! May you have a very blessed New Year in Jesus!

  7. Yes, searching... We are searching, all searching. And we follow a star to find the King. We bring the gifts, yet find THE gift instead.

    Blessings to you in the coming year.


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