Remember the Gift

There is a haunting line from W.H. Auden (sometimes attributed to Abner Dean) that reads, “Remember the gift, the one from the manger, it means only this, you can dance with a stranger.”  We can all be slow learners when it comes to matters of ultimate importance, and, even though I have pondered these words off and on for years, a clear meaning eluded me until this Christmas.  It happened when I was writing the sermon for last Sunday and re-thinking the story of the wise men’s visit to the infant king.  Matthew says that they “knelt down and paid him homage.”  He clearly did not meet up to their expectations–he and they were unimaginably different from each other, from different worlds.  The rich and powerful knelt down and worshiped the poor and helpless little son of refugees.  They danced with a stranger.  They came to bring him gifts, but they were the ones who received the gift.  That gift can be ours as well if we are willing to receive it and be transformed by it.

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About aliceatgrace

I'm the Rector at Grace Episcopal Church in Hopkinsville, KY. When I came here in August, 2011, I discovered that we have a great asset that was being under-utilized, to say the least. We have a beautiful Chartres labyrinth that was dedicated four years ago, and I decided that I would do all I could to promote the use of it. It's now just post-Easter of 2012, and, about a month ago, it occurred to me that our labyrinth is a symbol of what the future of this church is intended to be. We are people on an ongoing spiritual journey together. We like to ask questions, and we don't always have to have the answers. We are confident that God is leading us into deeper relationships--both with God and with the world around us. We invite you to "come walk with us."
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