One of my favorite Christmas songs since childhood is “We Three Kings of Orient Are” by John Henry Hopkins, Jr.
I recall singing this song as a child from this small book of Christmas Carols.
While the book is worn and yellowing from the years, it still brings back memories of peace, joy, and hope from Christmases past; it also brings forth some sadness in the missing of loved ones who have since passed on. Overall, though, I feel grateful for the many blessings along the way. So many of them, especially from my youth, I could only see after the fact and through hindsight.
Now though, as I remember all that has been and look at all that is in front of me, I am better able to see it for what it was, and what it is. By the Light of God, I see, and am touched most deeply by, the heart of the matter; the sentiment behind each gift, each act, each word. While sometimes the sentiment is one that is not of love and goodwill, and may be painful to receive, when I look at the Light, in time, I am able to move through that pain toward peace, hope and joy once more. When I allow the Light to grow and burn more brightly within me, I am better able to cherish each moment with love and care.
In a society that is constantly screaming, “Bigger! Better! More!,” the 12 days of Christmas are such an opportune time to slow down and to take time to reflect…to seek and to find or re-find the light of the Star and follow it.
O Star of wonder, star of night
Star with royal beauty bright
Westward leading, still proceeding
Guide us to Thy perfect light.