Tonight Keck and I celebrated Epiphany. It’s our tradition to have breakfast for dinner and think about the past 12 Days of Christmas.
The story of John the Baptist’s parents has intrigued me this year. I’ve read it and read it. Over and over – again this holiday season.
Perhaps it is the wonder of the story.
Two older people.
Well past their prime.
Going about their business.
Faithfully serving God.
Still passionate for each other.
Enough so that even when Zechariah cannot speak or hear following his encounter with the Angel Gabriel, they still manage to come together to create a son.
Zechariah knows beyond a shadow of a doubt that this is all God’s doing and he’s been only a player in what God intends. How does he know?
Let’s just say that even though the Angel Gabriel gave him quite a start – he just couldn’t fully believe that he an old man and his wife an old woman could actually get the job done.
When Elizabeth delivers the baby boy – just as the Angel Gabriel says – she insists the baby’s name is John.
Despite the fact that no one in her family also bears the name.
John she insists.
Zechariah mimes for a tablet.
In his deafness and muteness – His name is John.
At that moment he can hear again.
Share the joy of his “holy of holy” encounter with Gabriel.
John becomes the Voice of One Crying in the Wilderness: Make straight the Way of the Lord. There is one coming after me who’s sandal I’m not fit to latch.
He’s part of the four revelations of Christmas – because when John baptizes the Messiah the Spirit of God descending like a dove descending from heaven and the voice of God heard loud.
Three other revelations mark the 12 Days of Christmas:
- Christ is revealed to the Jews first. In a manager. In Bethlehem. Shepherds come.
- Christ is revealed in the miracle of turning water into wine at the Wedding in Cana as a beginning point for his God-Man ministry here on earth.
- Christ is revealed by a visit from the Magi. Confirmed as the best gift to the whole wide world.
Celebrated as Epiphany.
This last day of Christmas, I wish that 2015 will find me in faithful service.
In righteous anticipation of being found to be of some earthly good.