Ahh, those wise men. I’ve talked about them a bit, haven’t I? I mentioned how they probably weren’t at the birth scene, despite their inclusion in so many nativity scenes. I’ve mentioned that there may or may not have been three of them (and the names ascribed to them– Gaspar, Melchior, and Balthasar– may or may not actually belong to them).
But I thought about them in a new way today.
When they saw the star the first time, they didn’t just hop in a taxi and yell, “Take us to Bethlehem, pronto!”
Most likely, they spent weeks and months and possibly years following this star. They didn’t know where it would lead. They only knew that at the end of the journey was the hope of all their dreams and the answer to all their questions and the object of all their hopes.
I’m sure they grew weary from endless days and nights wandering through deserts and probably at some point one or more of them entertained thoughts of giving up and going home. But they didn’t.
They persevered because of a promise. They kept going because of a dream in their hearts that refused to die.
I wonder sometimes if I would have been so persistent in pursuing this Christ child. Would I be that tenacious now? Would I really be willing to leave everything and everyone I know and go (alone if necessary) to follow after this Jesus?
I hope so. I pray so.
I love their initial response to finding Jesus. Matthew says “and as soon as the wise men arrived, they saw Him with His mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped Him.”
They didn’t unpack their suitcases. They didn’t sit down to a meal or request something to drink after a long journey. They worshipped. They fell to their faces in astonished awe at seeing the result of their long and arduous journey.
May you and I do the same. May you and I remember that the best worship is always that which costs us something to offer.