Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Advent 2011: A Reflection from Cricket

“Behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem,
saying, ‘Where is he that is born King of the Jews? For we have seen his star
in the east, and are come to worship him.’” Matt 2:1b-2
We know how the wise men knew where to go in their search for the One they should worship. They followed the star. God made it very clear---a bright and shining star that no one could miss, as long as they were looking up---a star that would lead them to the Christ Child.
I was putting up some decorations in our home, trying to get the house ready before family came home for Christmas. Above our fireplace mantle, this time of year, I always hang a wreath with our nativity scene beneath it. The rest of the year a large iron cross hangs there. The center of this cross is a flat circle which I always cover with a picture that depicts whatever Feast day or Liturgical season we are in. This Advent I was looking for a picture of Mary and Joseph
on their way to Bethlehem to place in this center of the cross. But every picture I found of Joseph and Mary included the infant Christ. This is Advent! And I wanted the scene to be about this season.
I found, then, a large sculptured star our son had made for us several years ago. A star! It was much larger than the center of this cross, but I hung it there and it was perfect, covering the
center and reaching out to all the sides of the cross. Now I also had a beautiful Christmas card of the 3 wise men which I had placed on top of our piano. But that didn’t look right---the magi
had to be facing the star I had just hung. So I moved the card across the room.

Then I stepped back and looked at the magi---looked at the star—and looked at
the cross behind the star, and a ‘light’ of understanding shone forth: The wise men know to follw the star. As long as they kept themselves in that direction, they would be led to the King of Kings.
Today, the ‘star’ we follow is the cross. It will always lead us to the King of Kings. It will always draw us to that humble place where Christ can be found, adored, and glorified. Like the magi, we must never stop looking, never give up, or stop pressing on. It is our clear and shining sign that we will find Christ. Christ was born with a bright and clear sign, and He died with one. Let us not forget to follow, to keep our eyes on the sign He left us. Let us not forget, lest we lose our way.