We don’t know the exact time frame of the journey made by “wise men from the East” in search of young King Jesus (Matthew 2:1-12). It may have been several months or even a few years after Jesus’ birth when they arrived at Herod’s palace and asked, “Where is He who has been born King of the Jews?” (v. 1).
But while some of the details of their journey may be unclear, there’s much we can learn from the wonderful example set by the magi:
- Pursuing the Lord was their top priority (v. 1). These men came from a great distance – probably 900 miles or more – to spend time with the Savior. In contrast, King Herod and the religious leaders wouldn’t even travel the six miles from Jerusalem to Bethlehem. The magi showed they weren’t just casual believers, but were committed to seeking a personal encounter with the newborn King. In the same way, shouldn’t we make it a priority to seek the Lord and spend time in His presence?
- They came to worship Him (v. 2). Right from the beginning, the magi made the purpose of their journey clear: “We have seen His star in the East and have come to worship Him.” May that be our focus as well during this Christmas season. Instead of being distracted by all the trappings of the holidays, let’s take time to worship Jesus!
- Nothing could divert them from their mission (vs. 3-8). When God gives us a dream to pursue, we often have to deal with a “King Herod” who tries to distract us along the way. The magi truly proved to be “wise men,” able to discern that King Herod had no intention of furthering their mission. In the same way, we must avoid the influence of toxic people and naysayers during the holiday season.
- They had to overcome the discouragement of temporarily losing sight of the star. If your GPS has ever malfunctioned, you know how frustrating it can be to lose your sense of direction. This seemed to happen to the magi at one point, causing them to seek human guidance when the miraculous star was no longer visible. Yet if we persevere in our pursuit of the Lord’s purpose, His guidance will eventually return. We’ll discover that we’re in the right place after all: “Then the star appeared again, the same star they had seen in the eastern skies. It led them on until it hovered over the place of the child. They could hardly contain themselves: They were in the right place! They had arrived at the right time!” (Matthew 2:9-10 MSG).
- They not only worshiped Jesus with their words and their time, but they also worshiped Him with a generous offering. “When they had opened their treasures, they presented to Him: gold, frankincense, and myrrh” (v. 11). If we have a genuine encounter with our Savior, the King of Kings, how can we not honor Him with our treasure, time, and talents? True worship demands nothing less. Our treasure and our heart are always linked together (Matthew 6:21).
- They returned home “another way” (v. 12). Genuine worship will transform us and cause us to walk on a different path than we started on. If necessary, we’ll even be given supernatural direction or be “divinely warned in a dream.” As you worship Jesus this holiday season, He wants to instruct you, change your life, and give you the miraculous breakthrough you need!
May the Lord give you a fresh revelation of His LOVE for you this Christmas – love that took Him from the glories of heaven to a dusty stable in Bethlehem…to a cross on a Jerusalem hillside…to the right hand of God’s heavenly throne…so that you might enjoy spending eternity with Him.
Take a few moments right now to give God thanks for all He has done in your life. Like the magi, your journey may seem long and difficult at times. However, peace and joy will rise in your heart when you put your focus in the right place this Christmas: “When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceedingly great joy” (v. 10).
That can be your experience as well.