until it came and stopped over the place where the child was.
They were overjoyed at seeing the star,
and on entering the house
they saw the child with Mary his mother.
They prostrated themselves and did him homage.
Then they opened their treasures
and offered him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh."
(From the Gospel of the Solemnity of the Epiphany)...
Four elements centered on the Fifth Element. The star. Gold. Frankincense. Myrrh. Centered on Child Jesus born in the Bethlehem's manger.
The star of the living faith leading always to Incarnate Word, Jesus Christ, the Savior. This is ever-present in Christ Church. We may not see it, we may not allow it to lead us to Jesus, we may shift focus from the star of the living faith in God to other objects of our attention. But it is always there, willing to guide anyone to Jesus.
The Gold for the King of Kings.
The Frankincense for the Son of God.
The Myrrh for the Merciful Savior offering Himself up for us for our salvation on the Cross.
I was told when I arrived to Mara Region, to Zanaki mission, that the word Zanaki - the name of the ethnic group living in this area, comes from the question asked by the local inhabitants upon the arrival of Zanaki tribesmen from lands of the present Uganda - 'Baja naki?' meaning in modern Swahili - 'Umekuja na nini?' (What gifts have you brought with you?). Then, after presentation of gifts, they were allowed to settle in.
I can visualize fierce intimidating Zanaki tribesmen standing tall and proud in front of the Bethlehem manger (translating these days to the altars in our churches), asking the same question each one of us - what gifts have you brought with you for Child Jesus?
Then, suddenly, we may realize, that actually, we have come empty handed and empty hearted. Luckily, those Zanaki tribesmen are only my imagination. Otherwise...