December 19 – Matthew 2:1-2
After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.” Matthew 2:1-2
“We have come to worship him” was the reason the Magi gave as to why they came to see Jesus. They came to worship a king who had been born, but not just any king, a king who came to bring change to the world.
How can we worship Jesus while at the same time bringing change to the world around us? It’s not about a song. It’s not about a religious ritual. Real worship and real change happens when we sacrifice. Our faith is increased when we understand the power of sacrifice.
On a trip to Zimbabwe during the Sunday service I witnessed the ultimate sacrifice. The time came to take up an offering which in my mind was an act of futility. With over 85% unemployment and through the struggles of life people there were facing, person after person contributed something to the offering. And they gave with complete joy! Not reluctantly or out of guilt. They sacrificed what they had to participate in the kingdom of God.
Like the Magi, they came to worship him. They came to worship Jesus and bring a change to the world through their willingness to sacrifice.
The Magi sacrificed time and personal wealth to worship Jesus. They honored him with what they had. We may not have the resources like the Magi, but the value of worship is not measured by the amount we give, it is measured by the willingness to present what we have. I am always struck by the words of the Christmas carol, The Little Drummer Boy, because all he gave was what he had. He asked if he could drum for the king.
Reflect How will you worship the King this year. What can you sacrifice to bring change to someone’s life?
Pray Jesus, Help me to have a spirit of worship this Advent season. Use my resources, my talents, and my gifts to serve others in Your name. Amen