by Ciel Tagaza
Christmas season is liturgically over. After the holidays, gatherings, having taken down the Christmas tree and the nativity scene, and taken stock of all the presents we received, we now find ourselves in ordinary time. Perishable items have been shared and consumed, one or two deemed more suitable for others passed on. While there are gifts that we are already using or wearing, there are some still waiting to be fully appreciated, set aside for future use.
Some of us spent Christmas in silence or chaos, in less than ideal circumstances, closer to how the Holy Family spent that first Christmas.
However we celebrated the birth of Christ, I hope we don’t take for granted the present we were all given. The Gift that keeps on giving. The One whom we must treasure above all, consume, pass on and share. The Gift of Jesus who will take more than our lifetime to fully appreciate and comprehend. Ever ancient, ever new.
If we got caught up in the flashing lights or the darkness of this world, the merry-making or the melancholy, the exchange of temporal gifts or the lack of material presents during Christmastide, the Feast of Epiphany which we celebrated last Sunday hopefully reminded us of the Light that outshines all other stars, and the appropriate response to the Giver and His Gift, to God’s manifestation:
To seek Jesus, follow His Light, and do Him homage as the magi did.
…they set out. And behold, the star that they had seen at its rising preceded them, until it came and stopped over the place where the Child was. They were overjoyed at seeing the star, and on entering the house they saw the Child with Mary His mother. They prostrated themselves and did Him homage. (Matthew 2:9-11)
It’s our turn to give the Giver something of worth. Worship.
If after Advent and Christmas, we find ourselves still longing, still waiting, still searching, our personal hopes and dreams yet to be fulfilled, it’s okay, because He put eternity in our hearts. Remember that the reason we have hope and continue to persevere is because of what we already have received – the Light of the world – and be grateful. Be faithful. Keep going. Keep praising. Allow Jesus to grow bigger and brighter in our lives this year.
For God so loved the world that he gave His only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him might not perish but might have eternal life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. (John 3:16-17)