“Everything that glitters is not gold,” my grandmother taught me. She knew that not everything people say is true, and she wanted me to respect the evidence and facts on which truth depends. Before I make a major decision, I’ve also learned the importance of talking with the Lord and listening with an open heart.
Herod, however, does not believe in seeking God’s perspective. The king lets his own opinions and desires determine what the truth will be. He eliminates anyone who opposes his view. Herod has no interest in finding and worshiping the one true God as the magi do. The king wants to kill this infant who the prophets proclaim will rise to power. Afraid that his own status will be threatened, even by a baby, Herod starts making deadly plans.
The magi continue their journey, following the star to the place where the Christ child lies. When they find him with his mother Mary, they bow down and worship him, presenting the baby with elaborate gifts. The God who led them to Jesus warns them in a dream not to return to Herod, so they take another route home.
My grandmother’s wisdom still holds. We hear so much today that isn’t true. And we cannot limit truth to our opinions alone, or put our trust in anyone who does. We must weigh the evidence as we consider what is true. For guidance we need to pray without ceasing, read Scripture regularly, and keep in touch with our Christian family for support. We must follow God’s guiding star, which will always lead us to the truth.
Imagine yourself as one of the magi. What would this experience have taught you about truth seeking?
God, help us to faithfully seek your truth. Guide us in what we say and do so that we will pursue what matters to you most. Amen.