The first day of 2019, means we made it through 2018. As Christians we have celebrated the birth of a Jesus and the promises that his birth offers all of us. Even those of us on the outside of the margins.
The story of Jesus is an important part of our life as Christians as we strive to be as Jesus led by example, to be Christ like. However, there is a subtle message during the birth of Jesus, with the arrival of the wise men. It includes the grace of God, but also it is easy to miss is what they did after they went to see the Messiah. They bowed and worshiped him, then left following the instructions from a dream to not return the way they came. (Matthew 2:9-12)
These wise men, who bowed and prayed, within that they gained the awareness that from where they have come, they cannot return, not physically, but spiritually. Although it is said for the protection of Jesus, these wise men most likely also experienced a spiritual awakening. This awakening, changed their sight. It is something that most people reference when they have a spiritual awakening, of seeing the grace of God different than before.
For those of us on the margins, the wise men are the first to show we can learn ways to walk like Jesus, but we cannot go back in the direction that we arrived, because everything changes. The material world can look different and may not serve us the same as it once did, after a spiritual awakening.
For us in our different way of life, we can learn from our spiritual leaders, teachers and directors, gaining the scholarly understanding of our path in that knowledge. We are the masters of our own story and how it connects with scripture. This is where daily setting aside time for spiritual practices, can aid in finding our own way with experiences on our path as Christians. The intent to live each day seeing and living scripture with the joy of a child.
As the end of each year draws to a close, it connects me to that child like way of living. I look back to see what I did well. To figure out what I want to focus on moving forward, setting intentions for the upcoming year. To move forward is not to forget where we have just traversed. That path that was just made is what provides for the future. These are different than goals, it is focus on improving what is already there, without a set end point. Intentions are still honoring the traveled path, with trying to learn how to be a newer version. As for me, I do not have it all figured out, but a I can continue to learn from the life of Jesus, while applying it with newness to my life now.