A few years back, at our annual 2nd grade Christmas Pageant, we had four Wise Men. “Are you sure that you don’t want to be a shepherd?” I asked. “Or, how about the innkeeper….or Joseph, we still need a Joseph?” Nope, they wouldn’t budge….each wanted to be a Wise Man! So, much to the dismay of many, we had four Wise Men in our pageant that year. I still remember our paster looking at me and counting to three on his fingers…and then adding one more finger with a quizzical smile. Really though, although some of our church elders were a bit set off by this, it’s a ten minute pageant with 6 year olds. Is it really worth upsetting a child when no where does it say that there were three Magi anyway (except in a song)???
So, I’ve been thinking. What was so attractive about the Wise Men role? These men travelled some distance following a star to find a King. They brought gifts and lay before the child. And then, returned to their own country following a message that was revealed to them in a dream, avoiding Herod’s request that they come back and tell him where this King was.
We could all learn from these ‘Wise Men’. What do we do with our gifts? Do we use them to bring about peace in our world? Do we remember to offer them back in Thanksgiving to the Gift-giver?
Do we travel-a-far to find the King? Do we go out of our way, make time in our day to spend time with God? Do we continue on our faith journey following the Star that is ever inviting us? Do we set our eyes upon that star or do we allow ourselves to be distracted by more ‘earthly’ things?
Are we open to changing course when God asks us to take a different path in our lives? Are we so set on our own way of direction that we miss the subtle promptings of God’s guidance?
Hmmmm….I think I understand our Four Wise Men a little better now. Wise Men indeed!