By God’s Side: January 6, 2021

Weekly Inspirational Reflections from the Reverend Dr. John A. Dalles

January 6, 2021

The Reverend Dr. John A. DallesThe visit of the Magi is the centerpiece of this day we celebrate – the day of Epiphany. We envision elegantly and exotically dressed gentlemen on camels, with boxes resembling Fabergé eggs, traveling over hill and dale, guided by a star. So often these elements of Epiphany get moved over to Christmas celebrations. It is good, nonetheless, to let Epiphany stand on its own.

Unexpected gifts. Rare treasures. Heroic effort. Wise planning. And divine guidance. All of these are elements of Epiphany.

Paying attention to something greater than you. Paying attention to what is happening all round. Paying attention to dreams. Epiphany could not happen without these things.

Nowadays, the culture around us has appropriated the word “epiphany.” They use it in the same way that cartoonists use light bulbs – that “ah ha!” moment of insight. “I had an epiphany” is a kind of magnified “Eureka!”, “I should have known!”, or “I could have had a V-8!”

In the realm of belief, it is more. The Epiphany has at its center the Lord Jesus Christ. Epiphany is about realizing that He is a King over other kings and earthly powers (whether good kings, like the Magi who honored him, or those nasty kings like old Herod, who sought to destroy him). He has power over even the course of the stars in the heavens. And He is worthy of all worship and praise.

Without Jesus, the Magi would have been condemned to a life of eternal wandering but not finding, of seeking but not seeing. You know those kinds of feelings. So do not let it happen to you. Let God’s star guide you to the place where Jesus is. There, worship and adore Him. And you will have your own Epiphany.

The Reverend Dr. John A. Dalles
Interim Senior Pastor, Shadyside Presbyterian Church

About Dr. Dalles

Read more about Dr. Dalles.

Watch a brief video introducing a series of conversations with Dr. Dalles.

About By God’s Side

Shadyside Presbyterian Church publishes By God’s Side, a weekly series of inspirational reflections from the Reverend Dr. John A. Dalles, to support you in your spiritual journey. These pastoral messages appear in the blog section of the church website each week. (Our weekly e-newsletter includes an excerpt to remind you to read along with us regularly; click here to subscribe to the e-newsletter if you do not already receive it.) We hope this regular feature will help you to draw closer to God’s side in your life of faith.

Read more reflections by Dr. Dalles from By God’s Side.