Monday, January 6, 2014

"Joyful and Triumphant"

Today is Epiphany-- the 12th day of Christmas. The Christian tradition remembers it as the day the wisemen visited Jesus, following a star, bearing unusual gifts.  But more exactly, the church celebrates the Epiphany as the revelation of God in the flesh.  It's a celebration of light-- and it last for a lengthy season for those churches that observe the liturgical year.  Many churches have started celebrating Epiphany by handing out star-words-- which are stars with words written on them.  The idea is that you take one, and receive the gift it offers you, and reflect upon it the coming year.  My colleague, Marci, is generally awesome sort and she's been doing this with her congregation for several years.  She was generous enough to pick words for those of us that wanted them.  (I wasn't expecting to preach, but had the opportunity to do so as my pulpit supply was sick.  I wound up doing this with my congregation, and also got a starword there.  I'll post about that one later. I'm delighted to have two words: one for my life as a pastor in that context, one for my life that's bigger than one place or identity.)  My word for 2014:

I love it.  It's perfect for where I am in life these days-- as I'm becoming and overcoming and learning to fly. I'm going to be holding on to this word for a year, especially through the lens of the Pudgy Parson.  I don't know what shape it will take, but I'm going to be intentional about sitting with the word.  

Just for kicks and giggles, I searched for quotes-- there weren't as many as I would've guessed. But I liked these:




But maybe the thing I like the most as I think about the coming year is the phrase from the carol, "O Come All Ye Faithful".  Yeah, you know... "joyful and triumphant".  Maybe those words are my highest hopes for becoming in 2014.