As I pulled into the Hallmark Corporate circular driveway, I realized, with some dismay, that the Mayor’s Christmas Tree had disappeared from it’s featured spot at Crown Center. And as I walked one of the rider’s to the lobby entrance, the two Christmas Trees that had graced the corporate lobby were also missing. Another Christmas season packed away. No more twinkling lights on trees or houses. No more hopeful, joyful carols on the radio nor piped through the overhead speakers at the grocery store. I felt deflated.
At least Hallmark waited until the official end of Christmas. Yesterday marked the twelfth day and today is traditionally celebrated as Epiphany. On January 6th, we celebrate Epiphany as a Christian feast day commemorating the revelation of God the Son as a human being in Jesus Christ. Western Christians observe principally (but not solely) the visitation of the Biblical Magi to the Baby Jesus, and thus Jesus’ physical manifestation to the Gentiles. Eastern Christians commemorate the baptism of Jesus in the Jordan River, seen as his manifestation to the world as the Son of God.
The Revised Common Lectionary for today, the Epiphany of the Lord (Year B), suggests reading Matthew 2:-12 for the Biblical narrative of the Three Wise Men:
1 In the time of King Herod, after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea, wise men from the East came to Jerusalem, 2 asking, “Where is the child who has been born king of the Jews? For we observed his star at its rising, and have come to pay him homage.” 3 When King Herod heard this, he was frightened, and all Jerusalem with him; 4 and calling together all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Messiah was to be born. 5 They told him, “In Bethlehem of Judea; for so it has been written by the prophet: 6 “And you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for from you shall come a ruler who is to shepherd my people Israel.’ ” 7 Then Herod secretly called for the wise men and learned from them the exact time when the star had appeared. 8 Then he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, “Go and search diligently for the child; and when you have found him, bring me word so that I may also go and pay him homage.” 9 When they had heard the king, they set out; and there, ahead of them, went the star that they had seen at its rising, until it stopped over the place where the child was. 10 When they saw that the star had stopped, they were overwhelmed with joy. 11 On entering the house, they saw the child with Mary his mother; and they knelt down and paid him homage. Then, opening their treasure chests, they offered him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. 12 And having been warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they left for their own country by another road.
Matthew 2:1-12 (NRS)
Other definitions of epiphany include:
- an appearance or manifestation, especially of a deity.
- a sudden, intuitive perception of or insight into the reality or essential meaning of something, usually initiated by some simple, homely, or commonplace occurrence or experience.
- a literary work or section of a work presenting, usually symbolically, such a moment of revelation and insight.
“epiphany.” Dictionary.com Unabridged. Random House, Inc. 06 Jan. 2012. <Dictionary.com http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/epiphany>.
So here I sit, disillusioned by the passing of another Christmas season. I know that when I get home tonight, I need to pack away the Christmas decorations and dismantle the Christmas tree, storing both in the basement storage room.
Yet I am trying to initiate some enthusiasm for this new year. I continue to persevere in my quest for living healthier. Five days and counting now. It helps that everyone else in the family (including the dogs) has joined me in my Wii Fit adventure.
What I’m truly looking forward to won’t happen for nearly half a year. Rachelle will graduate from college in late May (or early June). Sometime between now and then, she’ll give her senior recital, which I plan to attend (in person instead of via live streaming).
Terry’s right hand is progressing well. The orthopedic surgeon saw him for a second followup visit this afternoon and prescribed some physical therapy and wants to see him again in six weeks. We’re still ecstatic the biopsy came back negative last week for cancer. Now begins the long grueling road to recovery and the welcome return of guitar riffs reverberating through the house.
I look forward to the ruckus with relish.