Gold and Frankincense
EPIPHANY OF THE LORD – YEAR A
3-6 year olds
We know that when Jesus was born, people came to visit him. God wanted people to know that His Son, Jesus, was born. The first people to visit were the shepherds. Do you remember who told the shepherds that Jesus was born? This Sunday, we hear about some new people who come to visit. There are no angels to tell them about Jesus. They are following a star.
The shepherds lived close by. These people do not. They have traveled from other countries, from far away.
The shepherds were poor. The people visiting today are not. They are very rich, and are very wise, which means that they study to see life in a way that God sees it. They are important men.
How do the wise men feel when they find Jesus?
they set out; and there, ahead of them, went the star that they had seen at its rising, until it stopped over the place where the child was. When they saw that the star had stopped, they were overwhelmed with joy.
They are so thrilled to find Jesus. They have so much joy! "Overwhelmed" means that the joy they feel is so great that it bubbles over, they cannot keep it inside! It is enough and more than enough. Abundance!
So what do they do with their joy?
they knelt down
They make themselves small before Jesus. Before a small baby, these great men kneel. Why do they do this? What do they know about him?
opening their treasure chests, they offered him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.
I wonder about those gifts. They are not ordinary baby gifts. What can they tell us?
Gold is a gift for kings. Why might they give gold to Jesus? He is just a baby. Can he also be a king? How can this be? What do you think?
Frankincense has a beautiful smell. It is like a perfume that is burned in church. Have you seen or smelled incense burned in church? The smoke goes up and up, like a prayer to God. If the wise men are giving this holy perfume to Jesus, I wonder what they know about him?
What should we do now? We know what the wise men know. Jesus is king. Jesus is...God. Jesus is a tiny baby who grows to be the Good Shepherd, who, God says, will
shepherd my people Israel
We can make ourselves small, too. We can genuflect. How small can you make yourself before Jesus? Try it now! And in you heart you can say, "Jesus, my king and my God." What else will you whisper to Jesus?