New Year’s Resolutions

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Dec 31, 2017

Dear Friends,

So, we have come to yet the end of another year!  How many of you have new year’s resolutions!?  I am sure that we have all made resolutions…and kept some of them from year to year.  Countries have even made resolutions.  There have UN resolutions to end child poverty and to deal with climate change. There is also a committed resolve to respond to the plight of refugees. Resolutions have been made since the beginning of time and they are often made with great intentions!

To be resolved to something: means that you have made up your mind about it be it to act in a certain way or behave in a certain way.  Wrapped up in resolve is: steadfastness, conscientious and determination.

Matthew’s Gospel (1:1-12) reading featuring the Epiphany, is about contrasting resolutions.  King Herod resolved to cling to power at all costs. After hearing about the birth of “King” Jesus, and hoping to do away with His threat, edicts that all first born children be killed. He even commissions the unsuspecting Magi (Astrologers from Babylon), to perform reconnaissance for him.

But, the Magi had different ideas about their quest. They were resolved to encounter with the Christ Child. While, on the surface one wonders if they knew who Jesus was. But, the gifts that they brought, reveal that they had special knowledge before they even left. Gold was symbolic of Kingship. Frankincense defined His Deity and Myrrh, a prophetic gift, representing his death.

But, what is intriguing, is their resolve. They were seeking to meet the Christ Child! Their resolve included study and movement

They had seen a unique star in the sky -unlike any other they had ever seen before.  Whether it was a super alignment of planets, or a super nova they noticed it and studied it and studied it relentlessly.

Their excitement also moved them to action! They wanted to see. They followed the star until they found that it was perched above a town. They inquired of the town folk. They asked people about the Christ child. The towns folk were being captured by the excitement as a matter of fact.

In the midst of the excitement of the town, the Magi pressed on. Resolutions are meant to be carried through. While it was important for them to study and learn from afar, carrying out the resolution required encountering the Christ Child. Their resolve led them from study inquiry to action and worship!  Their consciousness and faithfulness were rewarded in the realization of the Christ Child!

At the outset, I asked an important question!  Have you made a NEW YEAR’S Resolution?  I’m not talking about staying away from merely avoiding the chocolate factory, I am talking about a resolution to follow Jesus more closely. It doesn’t matter where you are – whether you have been walking with him for eons or whether it is just making sense to you now! We need to be resolved to know Him more. Study His Word, growing (or moving) in faith, are essential resolutions.

Be it resolved that in the New Year, you and I grow in our faith as we follow His star!

In His Peace,