Their Three Gifts, Our Three Gifts: A homily for the Epiphany of the Lord

T50c3d55630c610d77731509e60dc63ea--christmas-nativity-scene-nativity-sceneshe Magi, the Wise men, the 3 Kings — whatever you want to call them — came with their gifts to the Lord. Isaiah said this would happen: “the riches of the sea shall be emptied out before you, the wealth of nations shall be brought to you. Caravans of camels shall fill you, dromedaries from Midian and Ephah; all from Sheba shall come bearing gold and frankincense, and proclaiming the praises of the LORD.”

Tradition tells us the names of three of the magi, though there were likely more.  They came from 1500 miles away — what a journey!

Here’s what we know:

  1. Caspar, green cloak, King of Sheba, frankincense – represents WORSHIP
  2. Melchoir: gold cloak, King of Arabia, gold – represents our MATERIAL STUFF
  3. Balthazar, purple cloak, King of Egypt, myrrh – represents our BODIES (myrrh was used on dead bodies)

This year, each of us should give a gift in each of these things

  1. We must each give Jesus a WORSHIP gift…..a commitment to the daily rosary, to daily scripture reading, to a weekly holy hour
  2. We must each give Jesus a MATERIAL gift…maybe getting rid of shoes, or extra clothes, or extra books, or upping the weekly contribution $5, whatever….
  3. We must each give Jesus a BODY gift….maybe it’s doing something to take better car eof our bodies, maybe it’s using our bodies for Habitat for Humanity, maybe it’s using our bodies to hug a sibling or parent etc every day this year….

That all said, I bet the most important gift to Jesus from the three wise men was simply their presence.  These three guys were surely busy.  They were rich and powerful, probably quite handsome.  But they weren’t too rich, too smart, too busy, too powerful, too cool for Jesus.  Nope….they sacrificed quite a bit and made the journey all the way to the chlid Jesus.  Our greatest gift is our hearts, our lives…..and when we give THAT to Jesus, our heart, then we by happy consequence give to him all the frankincense (worhsip), all the gold (material stuff), all the myrrh (body) that we have…..