After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star in the east and have come to worship him.” Matthew 2:1-2
They followed a star to worship a newborn king. Led by God Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, did they know? Here was their Creator, drawing them to Himself. This is our God, the One who always initiates relationship because He is deeply, utterly, passionately in love with us. And so often, we don’t even know He is wooing us until we find ourselves in His arms.
Twelve days shy of my tenth birthday I sat transfixed on our family room floor and watched the first man—from my home state of Ohio—step foot on the moon. The moon! Right there in our home, we witnessed history in the making. How could this be? How could human beings travel to the moon and step out in faith onto unknown terrain? My young mind wondered. And then I wandered.
I walked out into the night and looked up. There it was—this moon—full and bright—and I wondered on which part of its face he stood. The cheek? The eye? The mouth? And all around—lavish stars, diamonds sprinkled on black velvet. I learned constellations that year and I could find Cassiopeia, Cygnus, Sagittarius, Scorpius and the Big Dipper. How did all this come to be—these stars and their patterns and this man stepping foot on our moon? Awe, I felt. And where did this sense of awe come from? Something must have made all this. Something must cause me to feel all this. But what . . . or who?
My family never went to church. Christmas was all about Santa—no manger, no wise men, no camels and sheep and shepherds, no God. I don’t recall ever hearing about God or Jesus except when adults swore or maybe in a Christmas carol sung. But somehow I had a feeling there really WAS a God and that this God had something to do with the making of this moon, these stars, the universe vast.
The night of July 21, 1969 was one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind—and the beginning of a holy search by a curly-haired, freckle-faced girl determined to seek and find Jesus by following yonder moon.
I saved money and bought myself a New Testament written in modern day English thinking that a biography of God would be a good thing to read if I wanted to learn about Him. How was I supposed to approach such a big book? I decided to read it like I read every other book—first chapter, last chapter, then everything in between. I’m an eager sort and like to know how the story ends right away. So I dug into Matthew and found Jesus in a manger—in a stall—with animals! And I found magi with gifts traveling far, following a star, to worship a . . . king? Jesus. Human. Divine. Came to die. For us. So we could live. I was amazed.
Next came Revelation. Of course, I had no clue what I was opening at that age but I liked the promise of blessing for whoever reads the book and hears it and takes it to heart because the time is near. (Revelation 1:3) Intriguing! Mysteries were my passion, with Nancy Drew and all. I read wide-eyed and open-hearted. Amazed again!
From throne to manger. Manger to cross. Cross to grave. Grave to life. Earth to throne. Here was full-circle Jesus crucified, resurrected, and sitting at the right hand of the Father and Holy Spirit, with whom He made the moon and stars and all unseen spaces! And the whole drama unfolds—good overcoming evil. And Jesus says at the end . . .
“I’m coming soon.”
He who calls Himself Alpha and Omega, beginning and end, says He is making everything new! And God will live with us and there will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain! And if we’re thirsty—spiritually thirsty—He will give drink without cost from the spring of the water of life! And He will be our God! And we will be his sons! (Revelation 21:4-7, paraphrased)
My heart beats so hard I can feel it in my throat! I want this! I want this Jesus! And of course, would Jesus deny such holy desire?
Who would have thought? A little girl, hardly hearing God’s name except when spoken in vain, gets led by the moon and a man who steps out. And she finds herself stepping out too, seeking and finding the God who drew her into His arms by the moon. All creation cries out in eager expectation.
Is the Lord God Almighty,
Who was, and is, and is to come.”
What peace and hope is ours who find Jesus—in the manger—on the throne—wooed into His arms—this blessed season.
Thank you—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit—for your beckoning star . . . and your little girl’s moon.
“You are worthy, our Lord and God,
To receive glory and honor and power,
for you created all things,
and by your will they were created