Here we are! Welcome 2024!
It is not uncommon to hear, “Maybe this will be the year we (fill in the blank with a goal or plan). I’m not sure what it is that makes one new day more relevant that another new day, but maybe this will be the year we choose to see the relevance of each day! Especially those days which seem to be baptized in the mundane.
During our first worship service of 2024 we shared a true moment that invited each of us to consider that maybe this will be the year we give ourselves permission to linger in the presence of Jesus.
As the children presented the Magi and gifts to the manger and crèche, Annabelle seemed oblivious to the expected flow, the cadence of the hymn, or the movement of the other children. Nothing else mattered to her in that moment but Jesus.
She touched his face, made certain his blanket was wrapped tightly, and more than once she kissed his cheek. She wanted to take baby Jesus with her, but I persuaded her to leave him in the manger.
If I could recreate that moment I would say, “Yes! Take him! Take him into the world! Introduce him to your friends! Share him with your family! And when you are frightened or unsure, hold him close.” As our children taught us on Epiphany Sunday, bring your gifts – but more importantly, wrap those gifts in love, patience, compassion, curiosity, and joy.
January 9, 2024