Ringing World Thought for the week 11/01/2022

Thursday 6th January was Epiphany, a day marking the end of the twelve days of Christmas and the visit of the Wise Men (or Magi or Kings) to Jesus, Mary, and Joseph.

Decorations have come down, the Christmas lights removed, there are Christmas trees next to garden waste recycling bins and the seasonal wreaths along my street have disappeared. I even spotted Easter eggs for sale in the supermarket yesterday.

The season of Christmas has been declared over, but is it really?

The nights are still long and dark (despite the days getting slightly longer) and news from around the world is still not always positive or cheery; restrictions remain, and wintry conditions still manage to constrain activities.However, it is not all darkness. As one of the readings for Epiphany starts, we are told “Arise, shine; for your light has come”. There is still light amidst the darkness.

Epiphany marks the end of a journey of people guided by a light to a particular destination, but the Kings still had to continue their journey, changed by what they had encountered seen and done. I wonder what the conversation on the return journey would have been about, how would they have reflected on the journey, what had happened to them and their encounter with Jesus – Emmanuel – God With Us?

One of the prayers for Epiphany asks God, Creator of the Heavens, to guide and sustain us on our journey through life.

We may not have stars directing our path of travel, nor a blue line for the method that is us living on earth, but what sustains and guides you on your journey through life?

Revd Dr Jenny Holden Assistant Curate,St John the Evangelist, Aberdeen