Monday, January 03, 2011
Waiting for Epiphany
A friend dropped by with a book.
A gift for Epiphany.
And a much needed reminder to return to my project of the church year, and a inspiration for said project.
What is Epiphany?
It is the day we celebrate the coming of the three kings to see the infant Jesus. Which represents the spreading of the Gospel to all nations. The multicultural threads of the story of Immanuel, God with Us.
What is an epiphany?
According to the dictionary,
"a sudden, intuitive perception of or insight into the reality or essential meaning of something, usually initiated by some simple, homely, or commonplace occurrence or experience." (bolding for emphasis mine).
In the previous mentioned epiphanal gifted text (yes, I just made up the word epiphanal) the reading for January 5th is from John Donne, one of my favourite spiritual writers. In regards to Epiphany, he writes:
"...Every action that manifests Christ to us is his birth, for Epiphany is manifestation. Every manifestation of Christ to the world, to the Church, to a particular soul is an Epiphany, a Christmas Day."
I like this, this idea of a manifestation of Christ to an individual being an Epiphany. One example of this--the first example--was Simeon's experience when Jesus was first presented at the temple. Simeon literally and physically experienced The Epiphany...the presence of the Christ. Really, that's what The Shack is...a story of a man experiencing an Epiphany...God manifested in his life in an earth-shattering manner.
In this season of Epiphany that begins on the 6th and ends with the beginning of Lent, may we find said Epiphany...these "simple, homely, or commonplace occurrence or experience[s]" that manifest Christ to us. And, greater yet, may we be a manifestation of Christ in the lives of others.