Epiphany, Part One

Epiphany…enlightenment, enlargement, a surprise, something new.Image

Those sixty years younger than us can be heard saying, “Been there and done that.”  No proper noun, just a verb that is flat.  Flat verbs at 20 years old!  Can you think of anything more deflating?

At least older adults are able to say, at least to some extent, “I’ve been there and I’ve done many things” and feel the satisfaction that comes from that.  It’s a satisfaction that first begins with an experience, and then is reflected upon for its worth and value and then is integrated into your life – either as something good, bad or just was.

In Biblical terms, the three Magi are imaginary characters used to propel the story to a universal dimension.  There is no Herod meeting or a warning dream.  In other words, the story is telling us that Jesus was not meant only for the Jews alone but for everyone.  These three foreign people and their foreign gifts represent us, all of us. 

Matthew is the only gospel writer to mention them, Melchior, Caspar and Balthazar – names intended to represent Arabia, Persia and India…  Foreign lands now united together by the birth of this child.

The star of the story is the star.  Because it guides and shows us the path during dark and doubtful times.  A lone, clear star that shines on a dark, cold winter’s night.  And we know all about dark, cold winter nights.

We’ve all had epiphanies in our lives.  Have we integrated them into your life – the good and the bad?   

And can we still be surprised or are you like those 20 year-olds – “been there, done that.” 

What can surprise and enlighten us?  Are our eyes still open to the wonder of this life and the wonders found in family and friends? 

Epiphanies never end.  I bet that even our last breaths will be an epiphany toward that star that never leaves or diminishes. 

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About Rev. Joe Jagodensky, SDS.

A Roman Catholic priest since 1980 and a member of the Society of the Divine Savior (Salvatorians). www.Salvatorians.com. He is associate pastor of partnering parishes, Christ King and St. Bernard parishes in Wauwatosa, WI.
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