OUR SAVIOR’S SHARED JOURNEY
On Sundays in January, Our Savior’s celebrates “Epiphany.” The word means a spiritual revealing “as in a sudden flash of recognition” (The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language). The Sundays after the 12 days of Christmas and before Ash Wednesday (the beginning of Lent) form this season of growing understanding about Jesus. Christmas celebrates the incarnation (literally the “fleshing” of God), Epiphany focuses on the meaning we encounter in “The Word become flesh and dwelling among us” (The Gospel of John, 1:14).
It begins with the Baptism of Jesus, where a voice comes from heaven identifying Jesus as the heavenly Son, with whom God is “well pleased,” accompanied by the Holy Spirit in the form of a dove descending on Jesus as he comes up out of the water of the Jordan River and the Baptism from his cousin John. The actual Day of Epiphany is January 6, and often carries with it the tradition of the arrival of the Magi. This Jesus is recognized, revealed (it’s an Epiphany) as the Savior and King of all Nations by that arrival. We get to recognize that this truth means “Always A New Beginning” (Jan. 7) for all the world.
Another reality revealed about Jesus in this coming season is how his coming, his ongoing presence in the Holy Spirit creates an astounding connection among God’s people, and a similarly incredible “One Degree of Connection” (Jan. 14) with God. That connection then becomes a living testimony to God’s love as God calls you to live “Doing What You Do” (Jan. 21). The season revealing Jesus then turns to the “Astounding Authority” (Jan. 28) of Jesus’ teaching that continues to challenge our understanding of who God is even in the face of evil spirits.
Epiphany continues into the first couple of weeks of February before Ash Wednesday on February 14, revealing Jesus’ power to heal and culminating with the ultimate revealing of Transfiguration Sunday.
The season of Epiphany is meant to reach our hearts and minds, to shape our lives by revealing the reality of who Jesus was and still is, and who we get to be because of Jesus. It is a powerful journey to take.
And I am on that journey with you…