The late afternoon sun cast shadows across the simple home where Mary cared for baby Jesus. Joseph stood looking out a window towards the setting sun. His thoughts visited the events of the past several months – the journey he and Mary made to Bethlehem to pay taxes to Ceasar, the remarkable night of Jesus’ birth where angels sang, “Glory!” and shepherds bowed in wonder as they beheld the Christ Child. He turned his head slightly to look on Mary as she kissed the soft, chubby cheeks of her child – the Son of God.
“El Shaddai, Almighty God, You have visited us. How can it be?…yes, how can it be?” Joseph’s voice trailed off as he, too, was consumed with wonder.
Hooves pounded in the distance. Joseph riveted towards the window. Dust billowed just over the knoll. As he watched, three camels appeared on the horizon. They were mounted by men clothed in rich silks and turbans – colors and clothing of royalty. The camels were bedecked with jewels and golden chains. The men stared upward towards the early evening sky. Simultaneously, the camels slowed. The men looked at one another and smiled and then broke out into a hardy laughter – pure joy! They commanded the camels to kneel. As the men dismounted, they hugged one another boisterously.
And then they grew silent.
Joseph met them at the doorway, his eyes wide with anticipation. The men looked past him and focused their gaze on the Christ Child. The small room became aglow with heavenly radiance. A holy hush fell upon the entire room.
“And when they had come into the house, they saw the young Child with Mary His mother, and fell down and worshiped Him. And when they had opened their treasures, they presented gifts to him: gold, frankincense, and myrrh.” ~ Matthew 2:11, NKJV
Gold, frankincense, and myrrh. Three symbols of worship in the ancient Tabernacle.
All of the vessels and furnishings in the Tabernacle of the wilderness were made of pure gold – God’s finest. Frankincense was burned on the altar of incense to create a sweet aroma of prayer as the priests interceded for the children of Israel. On the Day of Atonement, the priests carried frankincense behind the veil into the Holy of Holies to evoke the Presence of God in their quest for forgiveness. Myrrh was the basis of the anointing oil used to consecrate – to set apart – men for the priesthood. It was also used to prepare bodies for burial.
Gold. God’s finest.
Frankincense. Adoration of prayer and praise.
Myrrh. Set apart to share in His sorrows and those of the world.
Oh, what can we bring Him in this fast approaching new year?
I pray that my heart would overflow with an abundance of gold, frankincense and myrrh.
Father God, What can I bring You? I’ll bring You my heart – a heart set apart for prayer and praise, a heart set apart to carry Your love into a hurting world. I will bring You my finest, Lord, all that I am and all that I hope to be. I love You, Lord. You are my God and I worship You.
If you have received Morning Glory via email, please visit the Morning Glory page to worship with Cloverton as they sing, “A Hallelujah Christmas”. This will bless you beyond measure!