January 3, 2024
During Advent, I facilitated a conversation around the book: An Unlikely Advent by Rachel Billups. It was enjoyable and thought-provoking. One of the chapters was about the Magi (Matthew 2), and Rachel wrote the following:
These magi are not religious insiders. They are not church peeps. The magi have no political power in Judea, and they certainly do not have religious ties to the people… [yet, we should never] put boundaries around the places God chooses, the people God uses, and what God chooses to do. Our boundaries keep people out, and on our worst days they discourage folks from coming close to the Savior. It is heartbreaking to experience the religious obstacles that followers of Jesus place in front of so-called outsiders to keep them from experiencing Jesus.
Rachel then asked the question, If we were the ones writing God’s story, would we have given the magi a front-row seat to God’s salvation?”
If you have spent more than five minutes with the Gospels, then you know the answer to that question. Yet why is it that throughout Christian history, including some not-so-distant history, we have sent away many Magi-like folks? I understand that it is challenging, but signing up as a Jesus follower did not include the easy way. Dietrich Bonhoeffer wrote The Cost of Discipleship for a reason.
Wherever I might meet the magi of this generation, Generous God, I seek the capacity to welcome and to be made aware of how you might be utilizing them for a Kin(g)dom purpose. Amen.
Rev. Bruce Frogge