Led By the Light


Epiphany of the Lord

Week of: January 6, 2019
Scripture: Matthew 2:1-12

... we observed his star at its rising, and have come to pay him homage.
(Matthew 2:2b, NRSV)


Cologne Cathedral Shrine of MagiThe beautiful Gothic Cathedral of Cologne, Germany, was built (1248-1880) to house the bones of the Three Kings. Their shrine is bronze and silver, gilded, and detailed with figures and gemstones – a stunning tribute to the Magi.

As I viewed this celebrated work of art, I wondered: Do I believe the actual bones of the Magi are in this great shrine? I am not sure, but I believe it symbolizes the mystery of those being led to Christ at his birth, who trusted that God was sending hope to a hurting world. Traveling for many months, the Magi, led by the light of a star, found love in a humble stable.

Just as the Magi were led by the light so long ago, we are also led by Christ's light today. In our darkest moments, God's light beckons us to hope, new life, and new ways to live love in our world. As worship artists, we are called to use our gifts to share God's light with every corner of the world. Like the Magi, who "went home another way," our path often changes once we've seen the light.

I believe the Magi were called to give themselves and their gifts to foster a new hope. Like them, we are called to become a part of that mystery of love to our troubled world.


Creator God, help us live into the mystery of love, the gift we give to others.

Norma Lee Kerns BarnhartRev. Dr. Norma Lee Kerns Barnhart
Retired Elder, The United Methodist Church
Consultation, Preaching, Teaching, Retreat Ministry
Rockford, IL

Primary Photo: Members of the Federal Way UMC Worship in Motion dance ensemble from Auburn, WA, process during a worship service at the United Methodist 2016 General Conference in Portland, OR.   (United Methodist News Service photo by Maile Bradfield.)

Inset Photo: The Cologne Cathedral Shrine of Magi. By Arminia - File:Dreikönigsschrein im Dom1.JPG, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=2237541

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