I wonder if we realize that we have been so formed by a culture of individualism and self-reliance that we find ourselves in bondage to it. We see ourselves as our own individual boats, not part of a fleet. Have we missed the main point: our lives find meaning in God’s story, which is the very best story?
Forgiveness is a gift of the Holy Spirit that each of us receive in Baptism, but also through God’s grace each time we go to confession and are truly repentant of our sins. God has given us a great gift, and is such a loving Father that He continually calls us back home, back on the right path.
As I prayed the Rosary while a beautiful sunrise unfolded overhead, I realized that prayer was not so much about accomplishing something as it was about entering into a relationship, a communion, a loving conversation with the divine Other who is Love.
St. Augustine wrote: “Faith is to believe what you do not see. The reward of faith is to see what you believe.” Faith is to look with spiritual vision beyond the physical and the ordinary. Through belief, it opens the way to an encounter with God and the reward of a new kind of life.
Epiphany refers to the manifestation of Christ to the Gentiles represented by the magi. In this Sunday’s gospel we are presented with a contrast between three figures: Jesus, Herod the Great, and the magi who journey into the night in search of not merely a sign from God, but rather the Christ Child himself, the “newborn king of the Jews” (Mt 2:2).