WHEN THE STAR FADES…
“We observed His star at its rising…” —Matthew 2:2
In their homeland, the Magi saw a great star at its rising. Greatly impressed, they set out on their journey to follow the star to greet the newborn King to Whom they believed the star pointed. After they had traveled for a time, they could no longer see the star. They were past the point of no return, and were not sure where God was now leading them. But the Magi did not give up on God’s leading; they did not quit and return back home. Instead, they did the reasonable thing; they consulted the nearby leader, King Herod of Israel. Though Herod harbored ill will, he unwittingly sent them to the right place, Bethlehem, when his advisors consulted the Hebrew Scriptures. As the Magi set out in blind faith for Bethlehem, suddenly the star re-appeared. It’s no wonder the Magi “were overjoyed at seeing the star” (Mt 2:10). God’s guidance for their journey had resumed.
Have you ever started on a journey of faith in response to the clear prompting of God? You commit yourself to the journey, burn your bridges behind you (see 1 Kgs 19:19-21), and then it seems like God’s divine guidance completely vanishes. This is a pattern that many have experienced in their lives of faith. This might be a test from God, “the Tester of our Hearts” (1 Thes 2:4).
If you’re in this situation, the Magi are a model for you. Persevere in trust, as they did, and believe that God will guide you at the proper time. “Walk by faith, not by sight” (2 Cor 5:7). “Commit to the Lord your way; trust in Him, and He will act” (Ps 37:5).
Prayer: Jesus, like the Magi, I give You the gift of my life. I will follow You wherever You lead. “In my life, Lord, be glorified.”
Promise: “In Christ Jesus the Gentiles are now co-heirs with the Jews, members of the same body.” —Eph 3:6
Praise: “The Epiphany is the manifestation of Jesus as Messiah of Israel, Son of God and Savior of the world” (see Catechism of the Catholic Church, 528). Alleluia!