“Tuning In” in 2012

“We saw his star in the east and have come to worship him.”  Matthew 2:2

On this first Sunday of 2012 many churches turned their focus to the role of the Magi and their coming to honor the Christ Child.  The Wise Men certainly play a central role in the Christmas story, as does the star that led them to Bethlehem.  Over the years I’ve heard people say the “star” might have been a comet or perhaps a supernova.  Perhaps we’ll never know for sure but it is worth noting that God used a part of His Creation—whatever it was—to lead the Magi to their wondrous encounter with the child Jesus.  That God did this should not surprise us at all; throughout the Scriptures we find God using various natural phenomena to lead people in His direction.

The list of natural things God has used to lead people to Himself is long and varied.  On that list you would find things like a burning bush, a flood, clouds, lightning, earthquakes, a giant fish, a donkey, and mountains.  From the beginning of time to the present moment God has been using His Creation to guide people in His direction.  It is interesting to note that even in biblical times not everyone grasped the significance of what was going on.  God was speaking through what He had made, some just failed to notice.

This makes me wonder how often we miss God’s messages or His attempts to move us in His direction through Creation.   I suspect it happens far more often than we realize.  If we want to see and know God better it would help us to pay more attention to what’s going on around us in the world.  George Washington Carver once said, “Nature is an unlimited broadcasting station through which God speaks to us every hour—if we will only tune in.”  A good New Year’s resolution we might all make is to “tune in” more frequently in the coming year.  Doing so will not only make us wise men and women but will also lead to a very happy and blessed New Year.  That is certainly my wish for you!

–Chuck

(I took the top image at Myakka State Park in Florida.  The middle image is a humpback whale fluke I took in Alaska.  The bottom image shows a mountain I photographed at Banff National Park in Canada.)