We’ve Had an Epiphany!




The changing of liturgical colors from White to Green signals a change in the seasons in the Church, just as it will in a few months as the snow melts and spring makes its first appearance. Epiphany is a season of new hope and new growth enabled only by the light emanating from the Savior. We can mark the first day of the season by allowing this light to invade our being, revealing that which needs to come to the surface and filling the spaces with illumination that can only come from a personal epiphany. The divine manifestation is more than a historical event for us to mark, it is a complete shift in the relationship between heaven and earth.

Psalm 97 1-9
The LORD reigns, let the earth be glad;
let the distant shores rejoice.
Clouds and thick darkness surround him;
righteousness and justice are the foundation of his throne. 
Fire goes before him
and consumes his foes on every side. 
His lightning lights up the world;
the earth sees and trembles. 
The mountains melt like wax before the LORD,
before the Lord of all the earth. 
The heavens proclaim his righteousness,
and all the peoples see his glory. 
All who worship images are put to shame,
those who boast in idols—
worship him, all you gods! 
Zion hears and rejoices
and the villages of Judah are glad
because of your judgments, O LORD. 
For you, O LORD, are the Most High over all the earth;
you are exalted far above all gods. 


The celebration of Epiphany commemorates two events in the life of the Lord, the recognition by the Magi that the Lord had come and their subsequent worship (Mt 2:9-12) and Jesus’ baptism in the Jordan and the voice of the Father commending Him as His son. In both Christ manifest as humanity is revealed to a world desperately in need of salvation. As this season leads up to Lent and Easter, we shall focus our worship on the incarnation of God as man. Our Savior put aside his crown for our benefit though He would have been justified in allowing us to continue on in our own desires.

The perfect expression of love was manifest.

Gideon Pursues the Enemy

image The story of Gideon is a tale of faith, or the lack of faith. God pursued him to fulfill his purpose in restoring the relationship between Yahweh and Israel. Now, as Gideon pursues the enemy across the border territory of the Jordan. Exhausted but driven, the warriors of Israel pursue the enemy without stop. Needing sustenance to carry on the mission, Gideon asks the men of Succoth for bread to carry them further.

A lack of faith stops them cold.

A church leader faces this all the time. God will implant a vision and a call to the leader for a particular church to accomplish and yet, when the vision is presented to congregation, the naysayers raise the heads and begin to find reasons why that could not possibly be God’s call on that body. In one light, their hesitation is justified. It will cost too much money, it will damage the reputation of the church, it will never work, the carpet will get dirty. The moment of truth arrives for the leader; will they act in faith to God and his strength or give in to the church in fear for their position. Too often, we fall into the latter.

Gideon faced both the fear of the loss of reputation (Ephraim) and the concern for safety (Succoth) but kept his eyes focused on the purpose to which he was called. Did he wonder how Yahweh would ever redeem this people?