Epiphany commemorates the arrival of the Magi at the home of Christ. The feast is often overshadowed by all the celebrations of Christmas and is noted by most as simply the end of the Christmas season. We run the risk of forgetting the Wise Men, their gifts to Jesus, and the message they send to us all.
The Magi are only mentioned in Matthew’s gospel,
After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.”
The Jews had been waiting for a Messiah.These wise men from far lands who studied the stars, recognized that a king had been born in Bethlehem and had been diligently seeking for exactly whom it pointed to. Epiphany is not so much the end of Christmas, but the culmination of so much waiting.
On Christmas, Christ arrived and was announced by the angels, and adored by his parents and simple shepherds. Ephiphany is when Christ’s identity is made known to all outside the stable. The Magi’s adoration of Jesus represents how Christ had been sent to save us all, Gentile and Jew. Three men come from the farthest corners of the known world, and announced to a very surprised Herod that a King has been born. The news that so many had waited for had finally arrived, but it was the last thing Herod wanted to hear.
When I think of waiting, of disappointment, and of unwelcome news I cannot help but pull from my own experiences as a special needs mom. So much time has been spent waiting for answers, appointments, diagnosis, treatments, and so often what I get in return for all my efforts is not at all what I expected.
Read more at Accepting the Gift.