Today the Church celebrates the Solemnity of the Epiphany of the Lord. Innately connected with this Christmas feast is the story of the Wise Men of the East who set out in haste in search of the Child of Bethlehem. Learned men of financial means, it was ridiculous to leave everything behind in search of a child. But they did so because they were seized by a deep desire.
The only external sign directing him was a guiding star. An old hymn describes the star well:
O Star of wonder, star of night
Star with royal beauty bright
Westward leading, still proceeding
Guide us to thy Perfect Light!
This star of wonder that guided these wise, yet seemingly foolish men guide every man and woman who is seeking life, joy and a future. All of us are seekers of the things that last. All of us are seekers of love. And the ones who have experienced the love of God through Jesus know that the joy he gives us changes us forever. After encountering the child Jesus, the wise men returned to their land on a different path than they came.
After all, who can encounter Jesus and return the same?