for we have heard for ourselves… John 4:27-42 I remember the first time I saw “The Omen.” It frightened me to the point of sleeplessness and stagnation. I wouldn’t pick up God’s word and when I did I stayed away from The Book of Revelation. It was silly but I was young and far too easily influenced by external interpretations. When we hear or see other people’s experiences we often want to experience them for ourselves and at some point I realized that I had not fully read Revelation for myself yet I was allowing a movie to affect my understanding. I decided that I needed to read Revelation from beginning to end. When I finished reading, the movie that had frightened me so much lost its power. Thank you God for salvation is truly found in the power of your Word.
Six months’ wages would not buy enough bread for each of them to get a little.’ One of his disciples,… said to him, ‘There is a boy here who has five barley loaves and two fish. John 6:1-15 When you focus on what you don’t have, it is difficult to see what you do have. Our relationship with the world must die in order to leave room for all the possibilities of God. Walk with the divine and in time all things possible will be revealed. Don’t let your dismay cause you to lose your faith. Faith in God’s love for us is greater than our strongest emotion.
…so they sat down, about five thousand in all. Then Jesus took the loaves, and when he had given thanks, he distributed them to those who were seated; so also the fish, as much as they wanted.
But when he came to himself… Luke 15:11-32 I really like this part of the story, the moment at which a wayward child has a “revelation” about her life. After having made a series of bad decisions we can find ourselves in some of the worst conditions physically, emotionally and spiritually. One of the things I gather from this parable is that the prodigal son has come to this revelation by way of his life experience. He made up his mind about what he wanted and his Father gives it to him. We often want our children to make the decisions we have already laid out for them forgetting that God has a plan for them in the same way he has one for us. It’s usually not the same plan.
Once in a conversation with an aunt about my concerns for some of the decisions made by my son, I expressed some frustration. She in turn shared that her daughter was dealing with something similar with her son. Then she said; “Sometimes you have to let them do what they have in their mind to do even though you already know exactly what is going to happen as a result of the choice they’ve made. When that happens you just love them more. As painful as it sometimes is to watch your child on a not-so-wise path, the joy that you receive when they “come to themselves” is overwhelming.” I didn’t ask but I suspect that she was speaking from her own experience, assuring me that my joy would be the same. So my prayer for us today is that, if in our foolishness we feel as though we’ve lost everything, we too will “come to ourselves” and know that God loves us more than we could ever fathom, and is especially joyous when we redirect ourselves back into his fold.
Luke 15:11-32 “Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you; I am no longer worthy to be called your son.” But the father said to his slaves, “Quickly, bring out a robe—the best one—and put it on him; put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. And get the fatted calf and kill it, and let us eat and celebrate; for this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found!” And they began to celebrate.
Truth revealed is the moment at which some event or action appears in its true form or nature. Epiphany is a truth revealed. It is something that we now understand, an enlightenment or revelation, which was once hidden or unclear. Epiphanies in relationships of any kind have one thing in common: freedom. The very moment that truth is revealed we have the freedom to make a choice, or to move in a direction we may have previously thought was not possible, physically and/or spiritually. Epiphanies give us the opportunity to be. We have many epiphanies in our relationships with one another, some small, others very significant. Yet, the revelation of Christ to the gentiles via Magi from the east is an epiphany of a different kind. While it still offers us the same freedom it adds the crucial element of unconditional love, something we don’t fully accept until we are ready to fully submit to it and subsequently work to create an environment within our selves to give it in return. The light that the Magi followed is the same light that we follow today, the one that leads to unconditional love given in the gift of the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The question we have to ask of our selves is can we submit to and live out this epiphany or do we go back and submit to and live according to the “Herods” of the world. Now that the manifestation of Christ is revealed, the freedom to choose is ours. Arise and shine, for your light has come.