I’ve imagined it in my mind a thousand times. From my earliest childhood Christmases until this very Epiphany, I’ve tried to conjure up what sights, sounds, and smells must have been present at Jesus’ birthplace.
I can imagine the Holy Family without water, or toilets, or sufficient light. I can feel the cold, hard ground and smell the nearby animals. I think how grateful Mary and Saint Joseph must have been to find even so meager a shelter as this, and to be visited later by the Magi who gave them hope in the promise of their Son (see Matthew 2:1-12).
But I think back to those very first moments of Jesus in the manger, I think about our 2020.
By any standard it was an inestimably hard year. You don’t need me to list out all the hardships; I know that your heart knows them just as well (and maybe better) than mine. The uncertainty that Mary and Saint Joseph felt . . . we felt it, too. We still feel it.
Make 2021 just a little more bearable, please! I often pray. My heart is so eager to close one chapter and begin again. But I know that, while new joys will come, it will still be hard. We’ll still feel the cold, and the dark, and the uncertainty at times.
Just for this moment, let’s rest in the truth of the Epiphany. Let’s remind our hearts that Jesus came as a baby and came for all. For the sick, the lonely, and the brokenhearted. For the addicted, the persecuted, and the powerless. No matter your journey, no matter your 2020, He came for you, too.
Let this Epiphany bring comfort to our New Year. Let it bring healing with our neighbor, peace and love within our families, and hope for our hearts. Amen.No matter your journey, no matter your 2020, Jesus came for you, too. // Karen Schultz Click To Tweet